The Career Action Plan is the most important step for ensuring proper execution of your Roadmap. It details the specific activities that you will engage in to acquire new competencies and skills, when it will occur, and how much time is to be spent on each activity. It provides you with a means to manage all of the components of your career transition. As your career transition progresses, the plan should be updated to reflect what has already been accomplished.
Components of the Career Action Plan include:
- As mentioned earlier, identifying the specific activities required to achieve the competencies outlined in the Roadmap is an important first step. You need to evaluate each competency in your Roadmap and ask yourself, “What are all of the activities that I would need to do to accomplish this task?” List these activities in the left-hand column in your Career Action Plan.
Establish a Schedule
- The schedule is an important part of any plan. It tells you when you will complete the activities listed in the plan. A schedule is only effective, however, if it is pragmatic and realistic. When developing the plan make sure that you give yourself ample time to achieve the goal. Being too aggressive or not aggressive enough will have dramatic impacts on the achievement of your goals.
Assign an Owner
- Some of your activities might involve other people such as friends and family. Be sure to assign a person or group to specific activities in the plan. This helps to ensure accountability.
- A key responsibility is to monitor your progress on an ongoing basis. It works best to set up a routine where progress is reported on a regular cycle – weekly or bi-weekly. The Career Action Plan is a good vehicle for displaying and updating information on your current career status and progress to date.
Handling Schedule Slippage
- A key issue that often comes up during the course of a career transition is “schedule slippage” and how to deal with it. Schedule slippage occurs when you can not find time to complete assignments and agreed upon dates get pushed out further on the calendar. Integrity is generally the best policy. If slippage is occurring, it is usually worse to try to disguise it because it only hurts you. If roadblocks exist, you should talk about them. It is better to gradually tackle problems before they become more challenging or overwhelming.
We have provided a sample Career Action Plan on the following page for your review. This plan was developed for Career Roadmap Example I. We provided two different plans for you to review. The first plan focuses only on the “Skills Acquisition” activities. The second plan includes activities required to get through the Career Development Framework, including “Skills Acquisition.” Read them and determine which plans works best for you.
Career Action Plan Sample 1 (Simple Plan)
Career Action Plan Sample II (Extended Plan)