Define your pathway

Having clear goals and objectives in a defined career plan can be your map to success.

Exploring your options starts with career planning to develop your career objectives before commencing your job search. In any situation, if you don't know what you are looking for, it is hard to find it and difficult for others to help you.

Is your career objective clear?

Having a clear career objective before you start your search will benefit you in the following ways:

  • Your network will be able to make clearly targeted introductions and act as your eyes and ears if they are clear on your goals.
  • It will enable you to be proactive in your job search, targeting opportunities rather than simply waiting for opportunities to come to you.
  • You can focus time available effectively, researching your target sectors and companies rather than having a scattergun approach.
  • You can make better use of your time, by having a framework to evaluate opportunities before applying and being interviewed.

Helping to define your career objective

In defining your career objective, use the fundamental marketing principles that effective organisations use to sell their products and services:


  • Know your product: i.e. yourself, your capabilities, your motivations and where you will best fit.
  • Know your market: understand its needs, challenges and desires in terms of the talents employers are looking for.

A focused job search strategy

The use of a scattergun approach in the job market is likely to be ineffective. It fails to be focused, clear and likely to produce the results you want. Scattering CVs across the market, applying for every job you find advertised, and unfocused, unplanned networking will probably waste much energy with little valuable result. Clear objectives, a tight job search strategy and a systematic plan will ensure your job search is confident, conscious, articulate, focused and credible and makes it obvious that you are worth investing in.

Also, think about the objectives for your next role in the context of longer-term career goals:

  • Where do you want to get to?
  • What do you need to do to get there?
  • What do you need to start doing, do more of or stop doing, to gain the experience necessary to be considered for your long-term career goal?

The self-assessment advantage

Knowing yourself means you need to undertake self-assessment. Read more about it on the Self-assessment page.

Following the self-assessment process, go out and explore the market. Many people know very little about the opportunities outside their own industry or functional area. If you are interested in changing role or sector, find out where new opportunities are being created, where the market is growing, and where you may find opportunities that match your competencies.

Contact Alumni Careers:

Need more resources?

Visit our Resources section for exclusive access to research and support for LBS alumni

Read more