Career Paths

Career paths have historically focused on upward mobility within a particular occupation. One of four types of career paths may be used: traditional, network, lateral, and dual.
Career Management
a. Traditional Career Path—An employee progresses vertically upward in the organization from one specific job to the next.

b. Network Career Path—A method of career pathing that contains both a vertical sequence of jobs and a series of horizontal opportunities.

c. Lateral Skill Path—Traditionally, a career path was viewed as moving upward to higher levels of management in the organization. The availability of the previous two options has diminished considerably in recent years. But this does not mean that an individual has to remain in the same job for life. There are often lateral moves within the firm that can be taken to allow an employee to become revitalized and find new challenges.

d. Dual-Career Path— A career-path method, that recognizes that technical specialists can and should be allowed to continue to contribute their expertise to a company without having to become managers.

e. Adding Value To Retain Present Job—Regardless of the career path pursued, today’s workers need to develop a plan whereby they are viewed as continually adding value to the organization. If employees cannot add value, the company does not need them, and much of the evolving work environments cannot use them either. Workers must anticipate what tools will be needed for success in the future and obtain these skills. These workers must look across company lines to other organizations to determine what skills are transferable, and then go and get them. Essentially, today’s workers must manage their own careers as never before.

f. Demotion—Demotions have long been associated with failure, but limited promotional opportunities in the future and the fast pace of technological change may make them more legitimate career options.

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