10 tips for career pathing

When managing a team, your role extends beyond just doling out tasks; it also involves guiding your employees’ career development. One way to do this is through career pathing. Career pathing is the process of planning future career development opportunities within an organization. It is a great way to help your team members reach their professional goals and further align those goals with your business needs. In this guide, we will explore strategies and best practices for managers to navigate and excel at creating career paths for their team members.

1. Know Your Team’s Aspirations

Effective career pathing begins with taking the time to understand your team members’ career goals and aspirations. We suggest engaging in open and honest discussions about their professional objectives and using these to help mold their career paths. By encouraging them to articulate their long-term ambitions and how they envision growing within the organization, you can create a more fulfilling path that caters to their strengths.

2. Align Career Goals with Organizational Objectives

Next, an important part of career pathing is connecting individual career goals with the broader goals and needs of the organization. Help team members see how their aspirations align with the company’s mission, values, and strategic objectives. This alignment ensures that their career growth contributes to the overall success of the team and the company.

3. Provide Opportunities for Skill Development

Third, you should identify skill gaps within your team and create new opportunities for skill development. This could involve offering training, mentorship, or assigning projects that align with their career interests and goals. Make sure your employees have the resources and support needed to acquire new skills and grow within your team!

4. Encourage Cross-Functional Experiences

Fourth, encourage your team members to gain exposure to different aspects of the organization. Exposure to cross-functional experiences can broaden their skill set, expand their network, and help them discover new career paths. Encourage them to try out projects in other departments when possible.

5. Offer Constructive Feedback

Constructive feedback is essential for the growth and development of your team! We suggest providing regular feedback to your team members, highlighting their strengths and any areas for improvement. These meetings should encourage a growth mindset, where they see feedback as an opportunity for improvement rather than criticism.

6. Support Networking and Mentorship

Mentorship relationships can be instrumental in career growth. When possible, try to facilitate opportunities for your team members to network within your organization and industry. Encourage them to seek mentors within your company or on LinkedIn who can provide guidance, share experiences, and offer valuable insights.

7. Create a Career Development Plan

When career pathing, you should work with each team member to create a personalized career development plan. This plan should outline their short-term and long-term goals, steps to achieve them, and a timeline for progression. Atrium uses SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, Time-Bound) goals to track our internal employees’ wins throughout the year. We find that this method is a great way to measure successes and ways we can pivot our goals to what makes sense for the business at large.

8. Lead by Example

As a manager, you should demonstrate a commitment to your own career path. Share your career journey with your team, including challenges and successes. This transparency can inspire your team members and showcase your dedication to your own continuous growth and development.

9. Advocate for Advancement

When you are leading a team, it is important to advocate for your team members’ career advancement within the organization. Be proactive in identifying opportunities for promotions or increased responsibilities that align with their skills and goals.

10. Measure and Celebrate Progress

Finally, you should actively track and measure your team members’ progress toward their career goals. Celebrate and recognize their wins when they reach a milestone or significant achievement. By recognizing their growth and contributions, you will be fostering motivation and engagement, which in turn will strengthen your team! 

In conclusion, creating a successful career path involves nurturing your team members’ careers and looking at the bigger picture of what your company wants to achieve. By actively supporting your team’s career aspirations, aligning them with organizational objectives, and providing opportunities for growth, you can create a motivated and high-performing team that is well-equipped to support your organization’s goals. Remember that effective career pathing is an ongoing process that requires commitment, communication, and a genuine dedication to the success of your team members and organization. 

Abigail Joyce
Abigail Joyce

Abigail is the Recruitment Marketing Specialist at Atrium. She has also held roles for the firm as a Recruiter and Project Assistant. Her various educational and career experiences have helped to shape her unique job seeker and hiring manager perspective.

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