Manage Your Career

Change is constant, especially when it comes to your career. Whether you are a first time job seeker, in career transition, or face getting laid off from your current position, the information and activities provided in the Job Seekers Guide can help you. By utilizing this guide, you will gain a greater understanding of the career process and be provided with online resources that will assist you in this next step in your journey.

The Job Seekers Guide is simply another tool in your career toolbox and is not intended to serve as a replacement for any resources or services provided by your local career programs. The layout and structure of the Job Seekers Guide will provide you with a comprehensive listing of local and national online resources relevant to each step in managing your career.

It is important to remember that each individual manages their career differently. This handbook has been separated into five sections that reflect each step in managing your career. Below are brief descriptions of each step. Candidates should review the descriptions to determine which step to begin with.

If you are new to career planning, it is recommended that you follow all the steps in order the first time you utilize the Job Seekers Guide. Please keep in mind that you can revisit the steps in any order and that you can work on more than one step at the same time.

Step 1: Assess Yourself
How do you know where to go if you don’t know where you are? This step helps you discover and organize all of your skills, interests, and values that are necessary to explore the world of work and present yourself to a potential employer. It is a good idea to do this step every year, even if you have a job, since you may have gained new skills, or your interests and values may have changed.

Step 2: Explore Careers
Learn how to take all of the information you have learned about yourself and explore occupations that fit the person you are today. Find out how to research the educational requirements, tasks, outlook and growth, average salaries, and skills necessary for occupations that interest you.

Step 3: Create a Plan & Set Goals
Now that you have narrowed down the direction you want to move in, setting goals and making a plan will improve your chances of getting there. Setting goals helps you focus on your career path instead of just looking for jobs. People tend to be more successful when they set short- and long-term goals. They think about what they can do now to achieve their goals in the future.

Step 4: Expand Skills
List the skills you need to learn and determine where to get them before you start the job search. Learn about resources for going back to school, developing vocational skills, and options for financial aid.

Step 5: Find a Job
Are you ready? You are going to need an updated resume and a compelling cover letter. You are also going to have to present yourself during interviews. In some situations a portfolio of samples of work may be required. Knowing how to use your contacts, or network, to tap into that “hidden” job market is another crucial skill. This step will provide you with information and activities to help you diversify yourself from your competition.


Career Planning ModelManage Your Career Create A Plan & Set GoalsExpand SkillsExplore CareersAssess YourselfFind A Job