A bit of vision for the future and discipline can help you draft and focus on your career goals, be it short-term or long-term.
Examples of Short-term Career Goals
Short-term goals are something that you want to keep doing on a regular basis or something you want achieve in the next few weeks, months, or years.
Well, it is quite a subjective term as people have their own understanding about short-term goals, which are subject to the nature of one's job and career aspirations.
Similarly, a short-term goal for a functional consultant could be to meet the clients and work on their problems in a month's time or take up foreign language classes to deal with clients from other countries, etc.
Examples of Long-term Career Goals
Long-term goals are again very subjective to the nature of the work of an individual but they generally involve certain drastic and major changes in the career, such as job change, second career, starting a business, etc.
Successful faculty members set goals
Faculty members who consistently engage in research as part of their academic life set specific research goals from the outset of their academic careers. New faculty members will benefit from laying out goals from the time they enter graduate school, but most definitely when they begin their first faculty position. Without clear goals in both the short and long term, it is easy to postpone research objectives and get caught up in the teaching and service aspects of the academy. While these are both important dimensions of faculty life, it is often difficult for beginning faculty members to fit in research time, and therefore it is very important to set up goals from the outset.
Long term goals
In addition to short term research goals, faculty members who are productive researchers set longer term goals, looking out to 5, 10 or even more years through the span of their career. While these long term goals are flexible, they help focus and guide researchers toward a broader and deeper set of research aspirations. With these goals faculty members think large and dream big, since they may serve to push their work to new levels of achievement. They strive for that prestigious conference at the national or even international level. They aim for that prestigious publication with a featured paper of their own as a highlight. They think about the next level of research questions that would follow from their earlier work, and build to a pattern of accomplishment that some of the top researchers in the field of study have achieved. They seek connections with the top researchers as they lay out this ambitious plan. Then as they make decisions early in their academic career, they revisit the goals, revise them, and use them as a guide to direct their work and decide next steps.