Best Career Goals Examples: Definition, Types & FAQs 2020

What is your career goal? & What is the best career goals examples for you? A career goal is a fixed target acting as a guiding star in the galaxy of our professional life. These are the milestones we try to hit in our journey towards a destination, which is a dream job. 

Primarily, career goals are of two kinds: short term aspirations and long term achievements. Today we’ll learn all about the types of targets along with career goals examples. 

How significant is it to have some career goals?

The definition of a job varies from one person to another. For many, it is nothing but a source of income, a necessity to support their family. They invest their time and energy in it only to get the pay check at the end of the month. 

So, these people have minimum targets or goals. Each day at work, they have to face a repetition of the same process of the previous day. There might be occasional improvements and encouragement, but it is the same monotonous routine in the long run. 

If you find this scenario horrible, then career goals can save you from a mundane work-life. Some career goals examples will let you understand the concept better. 

As you spend a significant portion of your daytime at your workplace, it is essential that you love your job. This proves advantageous both for the company and for your overall wellbeing. You should always be focused, and a driving force should be there to motivate you to move forward. 

Career goals will show you the path to growth and success. Therefore, making a list of your goals will help you find out what type of profession is the best for you. 

What are your career goals examples?

Let’s figure out what is best for your job life. Hiring managers will show interest in both your short-term as well as long-term career goals. So, you must have a clear picture in your head regarding your expectations from your job. Then only you will be able to give a convincing reply that’ll help you to get the job

What Are Your Career Goals Examples
What Are Your Career Goals Examples

Categories of Career Goals:

While we break career goals into two main categories, namely-

  • Short-term Aims
  • Long-term Aims

There are other divisions as well. Let us have a look at the four common kinds of career goals and career goals examples

  • Goals focusing on productivity-

Productivity indicates the results or outcomes of the work that you produce for your client or employer within a time frame. Spending a productive day at work enhances both confidence and commitment.

  • Goals focusing on education-

Continuing professional or technical education in your field will ensure that you experience steady developments within your chosen career.

Constantly looking for chances to better your skills and learning new things will let you stay way ahead of your competitors and other co-workers. Keeping the focus on professional education is vital as it guarantees that you remain relevant and current within a particular field.

  • Goals focusing on efficiency-

Just like productivity, the focus of your goals can also be on efficiency. It refers to the capability to fulfill targets. When the priority is performing a task efficiently, the candidate does not just produce the work but does it with accuracy, consistency, and speed.

  • Goals towards personal development-

Personal development should top the priority list of any progressive individual. Working on your personal betterment is as rewarding as devoting time to professional education. Your talents will always support you amidst fierce competition and in a new, unfamiliar environment. So, brushing up personal skills such as networking, communication, leadership, and teamwork and fulfilling your dreams will become easier and fun.

What is Your Career Goal
What is Your Career Goal

1. Short-term Goals for Career

Short-term targets are basically small objectives that we set for ourselves with the ultimate intention of fulfilling long-term goals. If we segregate a complex objective into several small parts, it’ll appear as an easier task for us. It’ll seem like we can achieve it, bit by bit.

Short-term goals reduce stress and give us mental peace every time we complete a job. So, create small milestones to stay focused towards your ultimate destination.

What are the kinds of short-term goals?

There are various types of short-term job goals that can indirectly or directly create better prospects for career aspirants. They are:

  • Career Goals- These goals directly have a positive effect on professional life and usually consist of simple adjustments or alterations that enhance productivity. Some such career goals examples can be ‘getting out of bed 10 minutes before others or maintaining a well-organized and clean work desk. Some other direct career goals statement examples include learning to interact with customers and colleagues or earning a secondary specialization.
  • Academic Goals- Attaining educational qualifications will lead to multiple professional and personal advantages. As far as the career is concerned, academic qualifications can lead to novel opportunities. So, people often look for courses or degrees valuable for their job position. Keep track of progress, and a bright future is waiting for you.
  • Health Goals- Being energetic and healthy is an extremely crucial factor in professional success. So, eat well, sleep on time, and exercise to boost immunity and overall wellbeing. Fitness will do wonders both for your professional and private lives. Cutting down on extra calories will make you agile and increase efficiency at work.
  • Financial Goals- Even if not directly connected to work goals, keeping short-term monetary goals always improves one’s long-term career outlook by giving the person a firm control over his income. Such career goals examples are eliminating or reducing debt on a credit card, planning the budget, keeping aside a certain portion of the monthly income as savings for hard times.
Some examples of career goals (short term): –

What is an example of a short term goal? Let us look at some simple and most appropriate career goals examples for aspiring candidates:

  • Earn a degree or certificate- All professional environments are subject to change, aiming to adopt new methods and technologies. This tells us why constant learning is of supreme importance. Earning a new certificate can a step towards more possibilities.
  • Read good books- Irrespective of the industry in which you work and your job role belongs to, always focus on personal development. Reading good books is one of the career goals examples with multiple benefits. So, make it a habit to read for twenty minutes before hitting the hay.
  • Find a new job- Getting a new job is also among short-term career goals examples. When your organization fails to recognize your talents and utilize them, start looking for other options. In the end, job satisfaction depends both on the workplace ambiance and the money we earn.
  • Improve performance- Your performance is what will make colleagues and seniors respect you. Good performance will also help you to get promoted with a good raise. If your performance is not up to the mark, the company will not value you as an asset, and they’ll replace you with someone more competent, sooner or later. 
  • Be friendly with co-workers- Make it a point to have healthy relationships with colleagues. Wondering why this has to be one of your career goals examples? If you wish to work as a team or lead a team in the future, you must be friendly to make people work under you.
  • Observe co-workers- What are career goals examples regarding work pressure? Observe how your colleagues handle workplace situations that intimidate you or make you anxious. Co-workers, especially the ones who have years of experience, can teach you valuable life lessons. Observing will also let you distinguish between the hardworking ones and the lazy ones. 
  • Become tech-savvy- What is an example of a short term goal? Taking a computer course is an excellent short-term investment for your career. It is the age of technology, and all of us need to work with smart devices. So, overcome your fear of technology and shape your career the way you want.
  • Reach office earlier- Do you always struggle with going to work on time? Arriving at the office just 10 minutes before the entry time is one of the smart career goals examples. It will give you time to settle down and organize yourself. You’ll also have the image of a punctual, hardworking person. 
  • Spend the work hours fruitfully- Among career goals examples, not wasting time gossiping or on your phone deserves mention. Keep your phone away to avoid browsing or texting now and then. If you spend eight hours effectively, you’ll not have to sit for extra hours on weekends or take work home at the end of the day. 
  • A balance between job and private life- Do you want more career goals examples? Never give excess importance to your work and neglect your home. It is mandatory to maintain harmony between the two as both as equally precious. A happy home and a good job are the two things we all desire in life. 
  • Work on communication and networking skills
  • Organize workstation
  • Give time to a personal project- What are your plans for working independently? Think about converting your passion into a job is also among career goal examples. 
Career Aspirations
Career Aspirations

2. Long-term Goals for Career

No matter what type of job you do, having long-term goals will help you prepare in advance. Interviewers want to know about your future aspirations to fathom how goal-oriented you are. They need to know that you are the right candidate for a particular job. Only then they’ll hire you and give you decent pay. We’ll provide some long term goals examples to you based on which you can formulate some on your own:

  • Becoming a manager- Becoming a manager is one of the most notable long term goals examples. This takes years to achieve, and you need to progress towards your target gradually. 
  • Switching careers- If you do not see steady growth after staying in a company for a few years, maybe it is time to start looking for a better option.
  • Gain international experience- Having international experience is among the best career goals examples. This could include attending seminars or conventions in foreign countries. You can also get global exposure through conferences, trips, and charity works abroad.
  • Build a network- One of the active career goals examples is building a network. If you want to have a successful career, you must brand yourself and build a network. This will work in your favor as you’ll invite professional recommendations. It is a time-taking task and takes at least a few years but gives excellent results. 

So, what are your long term goals? Your long term goals may vary from the ones mentioned above.

How do we set career goals for ourselves?

Where do you see yourself at the end of the year? What do we wish to achieve in four years? What experiences will make it easy for you to achieve those milestones? What skills and interests would you develop to facilitate your career? Setting goals is all about figuring out in which direction you have to progress, and making a list of steps you can take. 

A famous acronym can be a help if you are struggling to write exciting goals. Looking at examples of smart goals will give you ideas on how to set a few career goals. 

  • Specific- Always aim for a block of concrete, specific area for your steps or goals. Let us try to understand this with the help of short term goals examples like “make ten calls to potential hirers in your field based on Linkedin connections” as opposed to “look for vacancies.”
  • Relevant- A relevant goal means a goal that makes sense to you and will give a result. So, ask yourself the following questions: Is attending a particular event worth your time and money? Is it the right time to switch your job? Does your goal have connections to other timelines or efforts? Does it need you to invest in resources that are currently unavailable to you? 
  • Measurable- To be sure that the target is measurable, ask basic questions like: How many? How much? How do I know I have reached the finish line? These questions will help you clear confusion.
  • Attainable- Goals become attainable only when we think it through before taking the steps. How do you desire to accomplish a goal? Which actions must you take to grow? Does the goal seem realistic and achievable from your starting point/ Yes, it can be challenging, but it also has to be achievable at the same time?
  • Timely- A goal needs to be grounded within a fixed time frame, not only for the sake of clarity but also to convince you to act urgently. So, ask yourself about the urgency of specific professional development goals: When are you planning to commence working on it? How much time should you take to complete a single step? 

Tips to reach your goals:

Now that you have understood how to set targets with the help of career goals examples, here are some expert tips for you to crack your dream job or dream job designation:

  • Write down your plans– If you write down the goals you have on a piece of paper and stick it to your bedroom door or above your work desk, you’ll see it every day. Those words will act as an impetus and not let you lose focus. So, make sure you hang the list someplace where you can look at it often.
  • Choose deadlines for yourself- Give a date to yourself to finish a particular task. Note down the dates on which you can finish by taking individual steps.
  • Reward Yourself-Taking steps to arrive at your goals demands a lot of dedication, determination, and hard work. So, always give small rewards to yourself whenever you complete a step on or before time. Occasional breaks for self-relaxation will enhance your motivation.
  • Work as a team- Find a person who’ll assist you in sticking to your plans. That person could be a friend, a job mentor, or a co-worker. Even better, if you work as a team with someone who has the same targets. This way, there will be healthy competition, and both of you’ll benefit from each other and grow together.
Career Goals Statement Examples
Career Goals Statement Examples

Frequently Asked Questions on Career Goals:

How to answer the question “What career goals do you have?” or “What is your career goal? “Do you face difficulty in tackling career-related questions? Let us discuss the most commonly asked questions on career targets by interviewers during an interview. 

Why do recruiters ask questions about career goals?

Interview questions always include at least one question about career goals of the candidate as they help recruiters:

  • Make better decisions
  • Increase acceptance rates
  • Identify potential fits
  • Get to know individuals better

Here are some instances of how you can give an impressive answer to inquiries on career goals:

Q 1.  Tell us about your future goals regarding your career.

Answer: Currently, my goal is to acquire a position in a reputable company like yours, which gives me opportunities for self-improvement and growth, both professionally and personally. I enjoy accepting challenges and taking responsibilities. Ultimately, I hope to be a part of the management in the future so that I can give my best to the company. Right now, my key targets will be bettering my communication and computing skills.

As I’m keenly interested in leadership roles, I intend on continuing education programs on skill development after work. So, at first, I want to learn to deliver work on time and with perfection, eventually making my way to the position of a team leader. I have been extremely fateful to be surrounded by team leaders and managers who have generously shared their knowledge with me. So, I look forward to becoming a mentor for career aspirants like me in this field.

Q 2.  What are your goals for gaining experiences?

Answer: As I have just started my career in this particular field, I’m willing to devote extra time to gain knowledge and experience to prepare myself to work on challenging projects.

Q 3. What goals do you have to better your communication skills?

Answer: I’ll make it a priority to master my speaking skills as I want to see myself standing out as a company representative during significant events.

Q 4. Are you eager to learn new disciplines?

Answer: Being in one department, I believe learning more about all the techniques and consumer psychology is essential to be able to develop a complete understanding of client behavior.

Q 5. What made you quit the previous job and look for a new one?

Answer: I wanted to work in a place that provides opportunities for professional and personal growth. I have been working with that company for several years and felt eager to experience a novel, challenging environment.

Q 6. Why have you chosen this particular field?

Answer: As I have done my higher studies in this field, I have gained in-depth knowledge. I think my expertise in my area will give me scopes for maximum advancements, and I’ll also be able to contribute to the company’s luminous future.

Tips for responding to questions:

  1. Give attainable objectives.
  2. Choose goals that are related to the current job.
  3. Make it clear that you want to do what is best for the company.
  4. Avoid committing mistaking like talking more about personal and family goals instead of work goals.
  5. Highlight your strengths indirectly.


Now we have covered the meaning of career goals, the importance of having goals, career goals examples, steps you can take to set some goals to have a shining career, and a detailed explanation of short-term and long-term goals. We also learned how to give answers to questions about career goals. Hope you’ve found it helpful. Good luck and we wish you success in whichever field you are. 

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