What is a Career Plan and why do you need it?

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Research about your career before coming to Canada

  1. Search for job opportunities in your field.
  2. Know the demand for your job. Learn about Manitoba’s labour market.
  3. Know the requirements to practice your job in Canada.
  4. Research is part of career planning.
  5. It will help you align your personal life with your professional goals.
  6. It will help you adjust and integrate faster.

What is Career Planning?

  1. It is a lifelong process.
  2. It focuses on making choices to help you in your work and personal life.
  3. Good career planning needs information about you, the world of work and commitment.
    (Career Development Manitoba, A Guide to Planning your Career).

Five steps of Career Planning

(from Career Development Decision Making Model, Manitoba.ca)

  1. Self-evaluation

  2. Explore options

  3. Make decisions

    • Weigh your options.
    • Choose your work or career.
    • Identify the steps you need to take to be successful.
  4. Set goals

    • List down what you need to achieve.
    • Prepare an action plan.
  5. Put your plan into action

    • Do the first thing on your action plan.
    • Examples:
      • Contact your professional association. Get requirements to become a member.
      • Enroll in courses for professional licensing.
      • Train for a change in career.

  6. Why do you need Career Planning?

    1. It helps you prepare for:
      • entering the workforce
      • planning for education
      • dealing with changing workplace demands
      • anticipating trends or changes
      • planning to upgrade or maintain your skills
      • planning for career advancement
    2. A career development plan makes you focus on resources available to you. It helps you see your options.
    3. It will help you map the direction you want to take.
    4. You can create a Plan A and Plan B.
    5. Helps you see your pros and cons.
    6. It will allow you to create short term and long term plans.
    7. Career planning makes the journey clearer and more manageable.
    8. It helps make your goals easier to achieve.


    1. Write down your plan.
    2. It will remind you of your targets and next steps.
    3. It will motivate you. You will see that you are getting closer to your goals.

    Regular evaluation:

    1. A career plan is not permanent.
    2. Life changes.
    3. Your wants and needs could change. Your ambition can change.
    4. Check your career plan regularly. Adjust and make changes.
    5. Don’t forget your ultimate purpose or goal.
    6. Don’t settle for a lesser achievement. Always strive for worthwhile goals.

    Article updated October 26, 2022.

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Community Resources

Still in your home country? If you are a federally-approved provincial nominee, you can register with Settlement Online Pre-Arrival (SOPA) for career orientation to help you find and retain work when you land in Canada. If you need additional help, you can get one-on-one coaching with a Settlement coach once you arrive in Manitoba. Both programs are carried out online.

Need a career coach to help map out your career plan? Manitoba Start can help you. You can also go to one of the Manitoba Jobs and Skills Development Centres near you.

If you want to do it by yourself, here are some helpful resources:
Career Planning, Government of Canada Job Bank
Career Planning from the University of Manitoba (Student Affairs Career Services)
A Guide to Planning your Career, Government of Manitoba

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