• Labor Day

    Are You Interested in Potentially Changing Careers or Advancing in Your Current Career? 
    Labor Day is a Great Time to Reflect–and Plan for Change

    Labor Day in the United States is a federal holiday that honors working people. According to the first Labor Day proposal in the late 1800s, the holiday recognizes "the strength and esprit de corps of the trade and labor organizations." This holiday should give each of us pride in the work that we do, but it should also serve as a day to reflect and perhaps even re-evaluate our careers.

    Labor Day especially recognizes the social and economic impact that working people have in the United States. We should all be proud of that effort and hard work. However, life can often get in the way of pursuing our dream jobs. Marriage, children, aging parents, and the need or pressure to bring in a healthy income can all stunt career advancement goals.

    Labor Day is a great time to take an honest look at where you are in your career, and a time to start planning where you'd like to be. If you don't have a career at the moment but envision yourself starting a new path in the future, or if you would like to advance internally within your current organization, you should educate yourself on the current landscape. The market may have shifted and changed, and you should contemplate your options.

    Consider drafting a 5-year plan to pursue your goals of job change and/or career advancement. Here are some suggestions:

    • Define your goal(s).
    • Write down your objectives expansively, including everything you would like to achieve. Break the goals up into smaller goals if your long-term goal seems too elusive.
    • Consider your current abilities and research/determine the relevant skills you should develop to meet your career objectives. This will be helpful if you plan on changing jobs.
    • Determine if you need to go back to school to meet your objectives for career advancement.
    • Evaluate your financial situation as it pertains to your goals. Determine the factors that may be influenced, such as family commitments and responsibilities, current work obligations, and outside activities.
    • Develop a timeline to meet your goals, and break this timeline into weeks with a monthly objective. 
    • Stick to the timeline, and create motivational "awards" for yourself when you reach these goals. Enlist your family to become your cheerleaders!
    • Check out some goal-setting podcasts, such as The Daily Life, The Productivity Podcast, or Dream, Think Do, to keep motivated and on track.
    • Check out some apps that will keep you organized and on task such as Wunderlist, Teuxdeux, and Things.
    • Read some books such as Getting Unstuck: A Guide to Discovering Your Next Career Path, Getting There: A Book of Mentors, and Do What You Are.
    • Reassess your goals as time goes on. It's okay if they change.

    If higher education is what you need to get from year 1 to year 5, there are options to work around your busy schedule. Online education allow you to study virtually anytime, anywhere you have an Internet connection. Start a new degree or consider obtaining a bachelor's, master's, or even a PhD. You could eliminate a lengthy commute and have the opportunity to work with other students and professors all over the country.

    If you prefer the classroom environment, part-time programs and night classes at local colleges are another option, especially if you are working full time.

    This Labor Day, reflect upon how fortunate we are as Americans.  We have the freedom to determine our own future, including our career.

    Now get started!



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    And if you are considering pursuing higher education we invite you to find out more about Kaplan University’s programs and explore our undergraduate and graduate degree offerings.

    It is important to note that certain career paths are growing and our degrees are designed to strengthen your knowledge and prepare our students to advance their careers. But Kaplan University cannot guarantee employment or career advancement. Several factors specific to a student’s or alumni’s backgrounds and actions, as well as economic and job conditions, affect employment. Also, keep in mind that national long-term projections covered in articles may not reflect local and/or short-term economic or job conditions, and do not guarantee actual job growth.


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