10 Examples of Future Career Goals For Job Interviews, Job Seekers, And Employee Performance Reviews

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If you are a student or a job seeker, the first question that a professor or a recruiter asks is, “Where do you see yourself in 5 years?”

This question has probably been asked at least once in a job interview or during a performance review with a manager. But, numerous candidates and workers keep on giving dry, uncertain responses because of their restricted idea with respect to their profession objectives.

Why not decide what you want to do next and begin setting professional goals to help you get there, rather than providing stereotypical responses like making more money, being better at your current job, or possibly getting a promotion?

Let’s talk about short-term and long-term career goals, what they are, how to set them, and some ideas to get you started on the right path to setting your own!


While most people may believe that the position or job they want is the only thing that defines their career goals, the actual goals are the actions you should take to get there. This means establishing milestones, both short-term and long-term, that will lead you down the necessary path and to your desired destination.

When you decide your ideal profession, whether it’s as a Chief, director, or entrepreneur, it will be a lot simpler for you to perceive the venturing stones to wind up in that job.

How to set future goals for career?

Due to differences of opinion regarding what constitutes success, teams frequently fail to achieve their objectives. Shrewd objectives utilize a particular arrangement of rules to assist with guaranteeing that targets are obviously characterized and feasible inside a certain time period. Identifying instances in which resources and priorities are out of sync can be discovered by going through each step of the SMART goal creation process.

Suzi is here. Suzi is a product manager at Techgain, Inc., a mid-sized technology company. Her task is to get more people to use Techgain’s mobile app.

She realizes she’ll require everyone ready and available to get this going, however there’s an issue. In the past, when Suzi set goals for the entire team, they quickly veered off course. It appeared as though no one had a crystal clear idea of what success should entail. Progress was not closely monitored enough. And inevitably, that significant objective was put on the back burner (before being completely removed from the stove).

Suzi intends to make use of SMART goals this time around to create a strategy and stick to it.

What are SMART goals? 

Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-Bound are the acronyms for SMART goals. As they relate to your goal, defining these parameters helps ensure that your goals can be achieved within a certain time frame. This method makes it easier to track progress and find missed milestones, eliminates generalizations and guesswork, and establishes a clear timeline.

How to write SMART goals?

Utilizing Suzi’s objective, let’s examine each part.

S: Specific

A goal must be specific in order to be effective. A specific objective responds to inquiries like:

  • What requirements must be met?
  • Who is accountable for this?
  • What are the necessary steps to reach it?

By considering these questions, you can get to the heart of your goal. Suzi might come up with a specific goal like this:

“By optimizing our app-store listing and creating targeted social media campaigns, grow the number of monthly users of Techgain’s mobile app.”

M: Measurable

While being specific is a good place to start, quantifying your goals—that is, ensuring that they are measurable—makes it simpler to monitor progress and determine when you have crossed the finish line.

Suzi and her team of developers want to increase the number of people who use their mobile app, but by how much? Even if they only get one new signup, that is technically positive growth; therefore, does this mean that they are finished? The same is true of their strategy; Which platforms will they use for advertising?

Suzi bought to incorporate measurable and trackable benchmarks in order to increase the impact of this SMART goal.

“By optimizing our app store listing and creating targeted social media campaigns for four social media platforms, Techgain’s mobile app can get 1,000 more monthly users. LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook”.

A: Achievable

At this point in the process, you should really give yourself a hard reality check. Realistic goals should not be pedestals that you will inevitably fall from. Think about it: Is it feasible for your team to achieve your objective?

Suzi might think about her goal and realize that, with a small team and a lot on their plate, creating ads for four social media platforms might be too much for them to handle. She decides to focus on the three social media platforms where she is most likely to attract new customers.

“By optimizing our app store listing and creating targeted social media campaigns for three social media platforms, Techgain’s mobile app can get 1,000 more monthly users. Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook”.

When you are the one setting your goal, protecting its viability is much simpler. That isn’t always the case, though. Be sure to let people know about any constraints you may be working within when goals are given to you from outside sources. Even if you are unable to alter the goal, at least you can communicate your position and any potential obstacles upfront.

R: Relevant

You need to consider the bigger picture here. Why are you establishing this objective?

Suzi is aware that the app plays a significant role in maintaining customer loyalty and that an increase in app usage could have a significant impact on the bottom line revenue objectives of the business. She now adjusts her statement to fit that setting.

“Become the quantity of month to month clients of Techgain’s versatile application by 1,000 by upgrading our application store posting and making designated online entertainment lobbies for three virtual entertainment stages: Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook Increasing app usage will ultimately boost profitability because mobile users typically use our product for longer.”

T: Time-bound

You and your team must agree on when a goal has been achieved in order to accurately measure success. What is your timetable? When will the group begin developing and carrying out the tasks they have identified? When will they complete?

To ensure that everyone is aware of how to stay on track within a predetermined period of time, SMART goals ought to incorporate time-related parameters.

Suzi will have achieved her SMART goal when she incorporates those dates.

“In the first quarter of 2023, increase Techgain’s mobile app’s monthly user base by 1,000. This will be accomplished by optimizing our app store listing and launching targeted social media campaigns on three social media platforms in February 2023: Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook The expansion of our app’s usage will ultimately result in an increase in sales because mobile is our primary point of conversion for paid customer signups.”

You can set and achieve any goal, no matter how big or small, if you know how to use the SMART framework to do so.

10 examples of future career goals (short-term and long-term career goals)

Here are the 10 future career goals examples that are divided into short-term career goals and long-term career goals:

  1. Gain a new skill
  2. Boost your networking abilities
  3. Intern with a large company to gain experience
  4. Start your own business
  5. Improve your sales or productivity numbers
  6. Earn a degree or certification
  7. Make a career switch
  8. Become an expert in your field
  9. Reach a leadership position
  10. Win a prestigious award in your industry

Short-term future career goals:

1. Gain a new skill

There are hundreds of businesses all over the world looking for people with a wide range of skills and abilities, regardless of your current industry. You will have a better chance of impressing your current managers or potential employers if your skill set is more diverse.

Keep in mind that this does not imply that learning kickboxing will advance you in the insurance industry. Check to see that the new abilities are included in professional growth objectives that are connected to the field you are interested in. Find out what will set you apart from the competition and make it easier for you to advance in your career.

2. Boost your networking abilities

Your capacity to build relationships and gain influence will frequently determine whether or not you are able to advance and achieve your professional objectives. The most common way of systems administration is substantially more than just conversing with people you work with. It’s about making connections in your professional and social life with people with whom you can share ideas and information.

Start by networking more frequently with people with whom you already have occasional conversations. You’ll get better at starting conversations with industry leaders and other influential people. This has the potential to make your name known and open up a lot of doors.

3. Intern with a large company to gain experience

Did you know that many people who have achieved great success started their careers as unpaid interns in their fields? Oprah Winfrey, Tom Hanks, Conan O’Brien, and Steven Spielberg all started out as interns at the bottom of the totem pole.

These opportunities for apprenticeship or co-op give people access to invaluable work experience, give them a look at the job market, and many people end up getting jobs with the company. An internship may be the best way to get a close look at your desired industry, whether you are a recent college graduate or someone looking to switch careers.

4. Start your own business

There is nothing stopping you from at least beginning the process of starting a business today, even if it may be seen as more of a long-term professional objective. Being a business has never been easier thanks to the internet, which is constantly becoming more user-friendly. Everyone seems to be able to build their own website and sell anything they want, from goods to client services.

There is no better time than the present to create your strategy and begin implementing the steps to construct your own business, if that is one of your professional ambitions. Settle on a passion project, then hunt for company startup prospects to disrupt your sector.

5. Improve your sales or productivity numbers

Everybody has one of a kind KPIs they are attempting to accomplish on a day to day, week by week, or month to month premise. What can you do to improve your statistics and numbers? If you want to increase your productivity, take a step back to identify any practices that aren’t helping your bottom line and eliminate them.

You will be surprised to learn that the numbers also rise as you cultivate healthy habits and focus your efforts in the right direction. Working smarter rather than harder is often the key to increased output. Investigate whether technological solutions like robotic process automation (RPA) and machine learning could assist you in becoming more productive.

Sometimes, all it takes for a manager to offer a pay raise or even a promotion is to see someone who contributes well to their position.

Long-term future career goals:

6. Earn a degree or certification

Even though the education system is constantly under scrutiny, people who have a college degree will almost certainly always have an advantage over those who do not, as long as they have a strong work ethic. The industry you want to work in and how far up the ladder you want to climb will typically be the deciding factors. Research will demonstrate to you that the majority of CEOs in the Fortune 500 have a degree, with a few exceptions.

University gives graduates the opportunity to learn about the whole business, making it easier for them to advance in their field and comprehend details that others may not. When it comes to career goals for the long term, this one can take anywhere from two to six years to complete and cost a lot. You’ll need to do your homework and get yourself ready.

7. Make a career switch

Are you dissatisfied with your job situation right now? Do you think you’re stuck in a position where you can’t advance or develop? Getting a degree, which was mentioned earlier, can be one of the first steps in switching careers, but depending on your goals, it may not be necessary.

Two of the most common goals for a career are to enjoy your work and feel passionate about it. If you don’t feel that way, you might want to look elsewhere. Do your homework as you look for new options to find out what to expect and how to get to that new position.

8. Become an expert in your field

Everybody seems to be claiming to be an expert in something these days. Expert is defined by the BusinessDictionary as an individual who has acquired sufficient knowledge and spent sufficient time in a particular field to be the most helpful in the “fact-finding, problem-solving, or understanding of a situation,” despite being one of the most subjective concepts in the world.

In light of this, if you can demonstrate that you are an expert, you will increase your earning potential and become a more valuable asset to your employer.

9. Reach a leadership position

Do you believe that you were designed to lead and inspire a team to be at its most efficient and productive? Any extraordinary pioneer realizes it takes far beyond basically instructing others, for them to find lasting success. People can develop a few key traits to demonstrate that they are suitable for that kind of position:

  • Learn everything there is to know about your field in general.
  • Share the credit for your successes and acknowledge your failures.
  • Accept the fact that there will always be someone who knows more about certain topics than you do.
  • No matter what position you hold, put in more effort than anyone else on the team.
  • Changes will come as they do.
  • Develop effective communication skills.
  • Learn how to delegate tasks effectively.

10. Win a prestigious award in your industry

Nearly every sector of the economy has its own prestigious awards. Are there any awards you’d like to receive, from well-known ones like the Nobel Prize, Academy Award, and Pulitzer Prize to more industry-specific ones like the Stevie, Thrillist, or SCORE Awards?

Career goals don’t get much more motivating than receiving a prestigious award for your efforts, whether your employer offers special distinctions or you want to accomplish something for a third party.

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