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Understanding your sector
Understanding your sector

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4.1 Example action plan

If you again take Phil as an example, he might decide that he needs to research more information about:

  • the global energy production market and how this might affect his employer
  • climate change agreements and legislation that might affect his employer
  • the strategies and practices adopted by his company’s competitors and the impact of these on his employer
  • wider career opportunities using his skills and experience
  • possible degree courses that would widen his options.

Phil may also decide that he needs to talk to a number of people in order to achieve the above, including:

  • his line manager about possible training and other opportunities with his employer
  • his HR department about the company’s graduate training scheme
  • his trade union about possible IT training
  • friends and contacts from college about their career paths
  • family contacts about other career opportunities
  • an impartial career adviser to help him review his options.

More broadly, Phil may decide that he lacks experience in particular areas and needs to plan how he will fill these gaps, including:

  • IT skills to broaden his overall skill set
  • team leadership if he wants promotion or a better job
  • networking if he wants to make the most of his contacts.

Having considered these ideas, Phil realises that some things need to be tackled as a priority before others, so he puts a more specific timescale on them. This is in order to make clear what actions need to happen before others and to impose some sort of discipline on himself to ensure that he carries them out. Eventually, Phil’s personal action plan could look like Table 5.

Table 5 Phil’s action plan
Action to obtain information and/or experiencePeopleTimescale
Arrange interim appraisal meeting to discuss training opportunities Line managerWithin month
Find out more about employer’s graduate training schemeCompany HR officerWithin month
Look into effective networking techniques using LinkedIn LinkedInWithin month
Find out more about specific jobs that I am interested inFriends/college alumniWithin month
Talk to family contacts about careers in retail managementUncle FredWithin month
Talk to trade union representative about IT trainingTrade union representativeWithin two months
Investigate changes in energy production market International Energy Agency websiteWithin two months
Check latest climate change agreements and legislation through appropriate websitesUK government and EU websitesWithin two months
Investigate competitors’ strategies via websitesCompetitors’ websitesWithin two months
Find out about availability of careers advice through National Careers ServiceNational Careers Service websiteWithin three months
Investigate potential degree courses through UCAS websiteUCAS websiteWithin six months