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Succeed in the workplace
Succeed in the workplace

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4 Moving forward

You have just done a ‘stock take’ of where you are and now can think about how you want to move forward.

The first thing to do is to construct a ‘wish list’ of what you would like to achieve in both the short term and the long term. Below is an example of Jon’s wish list, presented as a spray diagram (sometimes known as a ‘mind map’). You encountered mind mapping as a technique in Week 5 when you mapped out your personal contacts network.

Spray diagram – Jon's wish list.
Figure 5 Jon’s wish list

You might feel that Jon has aspirations that are way beyond what feels achievable for you and feel slightly demotivated. Or, perhaps you identify with Jon, and see him as someone who might be in a similar position to you. It is an ambitious set of wishes, and you might wonder whether they are even achievable. For instance, doing both a degree and a Masters in Business Administration within three to five years is certainly challenging, and could probably only be done if he studied on a full-time basis.

Without more knowledge of Jon’s personal circumstances, it is tricky to judge how realistic he might have been in creating his wish list. In a way, it is not too much of a problem if he has been unrealistic. They are only ‘wishes’, not a plan. But notice that Jon’s wishes are not all about work. They are wishes for his life. Work seems to be important in its own right because Jon wants an ‘interesting’ career. It is also something that makes other things possible. For instance, work may provide the income to buy the second home he wants.

Now it’s your turn to create your own wish list.

Activity 4 My personal wish list

Timing: Allow approximately 15 minutes

This activity encourages you to create your own list of wishes, but in a structured way.

Throughout the course you have written down lots of your wishes and wants and, in the previous section, you wrote down any ‘decisions’ you made along the way. Now is the time to pull them together.

Produce your own wish list of what you would like to achieve in the short term (next 6–12 months) and the longer term (3–5 years). If you like the mind mapping technique you may want to follow Jon’s example. Otherwise, use a table similar to the example below in your notebook or you can complete this in your Resource pack [Tip: hold Ctrl and click a link to open it in a new tab. (Hide tip)] .

Table 3 My wish list
What would I like to achieve in the long term? What would I like to achieve in the short term?







Having worked out what you would like to happen in your life over the next few years, it now makes sense to briefly consider where you are starting from. The next step is to create what is called a ‘SWOT’ analysis of yourself and your situation. SWOT stands for:

  • Strengths
  • Weaknesses
  • Opportunities
  • Threats.

You’ll do this analysis in the next section.