Whether you are starting a new career or trying to find a new job, organizing your goals and writing a career vision statement can help your professional advancement. Here’s how it’s done.
Studies have shown that writing down your goals significantly improves your chances of achieving your dreams. Follow these simple steps to collect your goals & organize your work life!
What Is a Career Vision Statement?
A career vision statement is a simple document that expresses your career values and goals in a positive and actionable paragraph—a tool that keeps you focused on goals and values during a job search.
A human resource expert at Berkeley explained why job hunters need to create this simple document: “Having a clear vision of the end state we are trying to achieve before we take action to reach our goals is the key factor in accomplishing any goals that we set.”
Career coaches recommend that you create a career vision statement as you prepare your resume & start arranging job interviews.
Vision Statement Examples
Read these real-life career vision statement examples to get an idea about what you would include in yours.
Example 1: Padraig Coaching & Consulting
“My vision is to share my knowledge and passion for human resources through work and volunteering to create a more inclusive world. I will lead by example and inspire a love of diversity in those I work with and my children.”
Example 2: LiveCareer
“My vision is to earn my doctorate degree and become the kind of teacher that changes the lives of students for the better, educating them not only about English but about the joys and meaning of life.
Example 3: Career management expert Dan Moran
“I will become a leader in my organization, helping transform it into an organization that respects all its stakeholders — while at the same time being the best wife and mother I can be.”
Example 4: Project manager coach Susanne Madsen
“My vision is to be an honest, empathetic and impactful project leader and to be recognized internationally within my industry. I am committed to growing as a leader and delivering value-added projects.”
How To Create a Career Vision Statement
Now that you know how a career vision statement can help your job search, try these simple exercises to set your intentions and organize your career goals.
1. Start by thinking about the future.
A great vision statement begins by clearly expressing your goals and aspirations. Try writing down your answer to this hypothetical question: If you could do any job in the whole world and money was no object, what would you do? Career experts call these “visioning exercises,” or prompts to help you think about ways to improve your career. Push yourself with these exercises. Don’t hold back!
2. Create achievable goals based on your aspirations.
Career development experts suggest you break ambitious goals into smaller & achievable ones. For example, if you wrote “I want to be my own boss,” take action by turning that ambition into realistic and achievable steps like “Earn my degree through evening courses; create a business plan; and build a business website.
3. Take a work values test.
Once you have your dreams and goals on paper, it’s time to focus on your work values. These are the core beliefs and values you cherish, and they reflect through your job and life choices. Take this free work values test online to learn more about yourself. These values must be at the heart of your career vision statement.
4. Rewrite your work values as positive statements.
Once you’ve collected your dreams about the future and the work values at the heart of your career, it’s time to express them! Write a sentence for each value with positive wording about how that particular characteristic is a part of your work life. Instead of writing a negative statement like “I don’t make enough money,” try this instead: “I increase my value to the company and earn better compensation for my work.”
5. Express your work values & goals in a single paragraph!
Once you have a collection of positive statements & actionable goals, combine them into a future-facing paragraph. Make sure you keep each sentence practical & positive. Here is a great example that combines the values & goals mentioned in previous steps: “By earning my degree through evening courses, I will increase my value to the company and earn better compensation for my work.”
How To Apply Your Career Vision Statement
Once you have your career vision written down, it’s time to use it!
Start by adding your career vision statement to cover letters for prospective employers, posting it on your LinkedIn profile and sharing it during job interviews.
Most importantly, give your career vision statement a prominent place in your planner! You can even create job search trackers in a Checklists Journal or a Dot Grid Journal to keep track of leads, resumes and cover letters.
Once you have created a career vision statement, start sharing it on coffee dates with people in your professional network. This is a crucial step because experts estimate that 70% to 80% of jobs are not advertised. You can keep track of all those new meetings in your planner!
As you share your career goals and dreams with friends, family and professional connections, you’ll get better at explaining and achieving your career aspirations!