November 13, 2023

Career development – a lifelong journey

November is National Career Development Month, an event that was established to promote career planning and progression for people of all ages. The month-long initiative aims to educate and inspire individuals to explore career options, set goals, and make strategic decisions about their professional futures. It also emphasises the vital role that employers themselves play in promoting career development within their own organisations. It’s the perfect time to showcase the importance of life-long learning, skill development and personal growth that lead individuals to meaningful and fulfilling careers.



Career development is not merely a process limited to job hunting and workplace advancement; it’s a lifelong journey. Whether you’re a student preparing to take that first step on the career ladder, a professional seeking new opportunities, or someone looking to make a significant career change, here are strategies you can use and actions you can take to make sure that you achieve your career aspirations.

Make a plan

One of the core principles of career development is setting goals. Whether it’s landing a dream job, attaining a certain salary, or developing specific skills, setting clear and achievable goals is essential. And one size doesn’t fit all. What success looks like is a highly personalised thing and will be different for each individual. Each person’s journey is unique, influenced by their interests, skills, and circumstances. Discuss your aspirations with your line manager to see how your employer might support you.

Strengthen your networks

Broadening your network can open up a range of opportunities. Seeking guidance from mentors, creating connections with industry peers, and meeting professionals within your field of interest are all integral parts of career development. So approach your employer about attending a seminar, a networking event, or joining an association relative to your sector; be proactive.

Explore new opportunities

Gone are the days of a one-track career where an individual will spend their entire working life in a single profession. Making one (or even several) career changes has become increasingly common. These can be driven by a range of factors – from a lack of job satisfaction to technological advances or financial reasons – career switching is now part of the modern day employment landscape. According to research carried out by London School of Business and Finance, nearly half of all workers in the UK (47%) would like to change career. 57% of millennials are open to reinventing their professional journey (source:

Life-long learning

The concept of life-long learning is more relevant than ever and is an essential part of personal and professional development. The skills that once secured a position may not be sufficient in the future. Skills development is a continuous process that helps you stay relevant in your current field and provides a gateway to new career opportunities. Learning will help you stay ahead of the curve in today’s fast-paced world. It comes in many forms, from formal training courses to conferences, seminars or industry publications. Learning new skills and gaining new knowledge can bring real enrichment as well as numerous career-related benefits.



Career development is not a term exclusively relevant to employees. Employers who embrace the concept can also enjoy real benefits for their organisations.

Staff retention

Investing in employees’ career path, inspiring them to achieve, and ensuring they feel supported, improves motivation, job satisfaction, and, in turn, productivity. This naturally leads to lower staff turnover. Work with employees to understand their ambitions, strengths, and weaknesses and put a plan in place for their career development. It will be unique to each individual.

Create opinion formers

Developing staff so that they become thought leaders at the top of their industry can only be positive for employers. Your organisation builds reputation and brand awareness as a direct result.

Attracting candidates

Most employees are looking for career development opportunities. 63% of employees who left their jobs in 2021 did so because of a lack of career advancement opportunities (source PEW Research).

Offer training programmes

In-house training is a cost-effective way to nurture employee talents, supporting their career progression. It allows your team to identify training needs and utilise the expertise of existing staff members. Other options include bringing an external course provider into your organisation, offering to pay for individual training programmes, or reimbursing training costs for degrees or certifications.



Career development is a lifelong journey for which individuals need to be prepared and for which employers can create a landscape beneficial to both employees and the organisations themselves. At OSA we have the skills and experience to support you along the way.

Nick Graham MIRP, CertRP

Nick is the owner of OSA Recruitment in Guernsey, a successful recruitment business, with close to 30 years' experience of guiding people through their career choices. OSA's excellent team are experts in finding the perfect candidate for jobs at all levels, from graduates and temporary placements to senior executive positions and non-executive directors.

Nick says: 'I § that an integral part of our success is attributed to our unrivalled reputation for professionalism, honesty and integrity, and for building trusting relationships with clients and candidates.' Nick's background includes a public relations degree and several jobs in stockbroking and financial services.

Over the course of his career and through his involvement with the administration of local sport, he has built a wide range of contacts in Guernsey's business community. He has a solid understanding of how the island works and how beneficial close networks are, regardless of the career you are immersed in.

He is interested in continuing to build his network of senior business leaders for mutual benefits.