Resource for Planning Your Job Search, Part 3

For the past couple posts, I’ve been talking about Dave Carpenter’s 31-day plan to organize oneself to achieve your goals and how this plan translates to the job search. You can read part one here and part two here. Today’s focus is going to be on the important step of goal-setting.

Wall of goalsCreate SMART goals: Having a goal like “I’m going to increase my networking” is not enough. It’s so vague that it begs many questions: What type of networking are you planning to increase — in-person or online? How much of an increase is enough? Upon completion of this goal, what will success look like?

You need to have goals that are more concrete.

SMART goals are defined by Mr. Carpenter as being specific, measurable, action-based, realistic, and time-based.

During my career in nonprofit management, I had the opportunity to work with organizations on strategic planning processes that included the use of SMART goals, and this is one of those business tools that is just as applicable to the individual level. SMART goals are a great way to get down to brass tacks. By using them, you hone in on how you are going to accomplish a task, what the successful accomplishment of that task will look like, and the time frame in which it will happen.

A twist on this would be SMARTER goals. Social media expert Phil Gerbyshak wrote a post on this idea, and he broke down the acronym this way:

S – Specific
M – Measurable
A – Accountability (vs. action-based — definitely merits to both ways of looking at the A)
R – Realistic
T – Time-based
E – Exciting
R – Recorded (love this part!)

Whether you use SMART or SMARTER goals in defining what you are going to do in your job search, the structure they provide will undoubtedly help you to have a clearer sense of how you will go about getting a job and how long it will take you to complete the tasks that will get you closer to your next job.

Given the importance of this step and the different ideas on how to approach setting up the goals, I will leave this as the only step talked about today and finish up Dave Carpenter’s series on setting up your 2010 plan tomorrow!

Goals, Goals, Goals courtesy of lululemon athletica

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