Whether you are a hospitality industry professional or a professional from some other industry, you must have career goals. You need to be aware of career goal setting and understand how to develop them.

During a job interview, you may be asked a question about your career goals. It’s not always easy to answer, especially if you haven’t prepared these answers in advance. This is more important for hotel industry people as career goal setting is crucial to answering some of the common hotel interview questions

After all, it’s important to tailor your expectations to the targeted role. Otherwise, you’ll be seen as if you are contradicting yourself.

Career goals are long-term targets that define what you want to accomplish in your profession, such as a job title, a salary, or a personal mission.

In some cases, you can even mention your career expectations in your resume. For example, new grads and career changers will especially benefit if they succeed in connecting their current skills with career ambitions.

In this post, we have covered all about developing career goals. 



If you need help with defining your goals and including this information in your resume, you can either follow the advice below or address professionals.

You can also find examples of career goals in Indeed Blog here. It does a good work of providing multiple examples of career goals based on various parameters. Let’s now discuss this in detail here:

What Is a Career Goal?

Let’s talk more about the definition of career goals. What are these goals, and why are they so important that interviewers wonder about them? 

A career goal is a statement that defines the job you aspire to have and your expectations for your professional future.

This is very important, particularly for hospitality industry professionals due to various hospitality career options. Goal setting helps improve focus. 

It must be realistic, something you believe you can achieve. If you don’t set it clearly, it’s hard to build an action plan toward this attainable goal.

Of course, no one is saying that you shouldn’t be ambitious; however, you need to know the limits. It is crucial to avoid common career mistakes of not having clear career goals, progression planning and network reach out. 


Here is an example of how to define and set a Goal for yourself.

Goal: To become a renowned hotel manager known for innovation and sustainability practices within the hospitality industry.


Short-Term Goal (1-2 years):

  • Complete a certification program in sustainable hospitality management to deepen your understanding of eco-friendly practices in hotel operations.
  • Take on a leadership role in organizing a sustainability initiative within the current hotel, focusing on reducing waste and energy consumption by 20% within the first year.


Mid-Term Goal (3-5 years):

  • Pursue higher education such as a Master’s degree in Hospitality Management focusing on hospitality innovation and sustainable practices in the industry.
  • Lead a team in implementing cutting-edge technology solutions to improve operational efficiency while maintaining a personalized guest experience.


Long-Term Goal (5+ years):

  • Secure a position as a general manager or executive in one of the prestigious hotel chains known for its commitment to sustainability.
  • Develop and implement a comprehensive sustainability strategy across multiple properties, aiming to achieve carbon neutrality and zero-waste status within a decade.

By setting these goals, the professional aims not only to advance their hospitality career but also to make a significant impact on the hotel industry by promoting sustainability and innovation.

How You Can Develop These Goals

You must know what you expect from your career in the future; however, it can be tough sometimes to word them properly. 

In any case, if you feel that it’s hard for you to define what career ambition you want to achieve, you can try doing the following:

To set effective career goals, you should follow the SMART formula, which stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Timely. You should also align your career goals with your own definition of success, your values, your strengths, and your interests.

One of the blog posts by Builtin illustrates a lot about Career Goals and How to Set Them. It also has 15 Examples.


Explore your choices

If you feel like the pool is so big that it’s hard to make a choice, start by discovering your options. 

Sometimes, when you take a closer look at what you have at first considered a perfect option, it might not look that great.

Therefore, do your research and thoroughly check every career path you see as the best fit for you. 

You might find surprising details that will eventually cut your options by half. Then, based on the range of paths you have, try answering a few of the questions below:

  • What skills and interests are required?
  • What makes this occupation so inspiring to me?
  • What career development and professional opportunities will I get?
  • What are the standard requirements for successful candidates?
  • What is the typical salary?
  • Is work-life balance well-preserved?

Again, these questions will help you cut a few options from your list.

Compare the available options

If you managed to build a list of several options, now is the time to check them. 

Ensure that every job you pick up feels right for you. Compare these options and see if you really feel interested in growing within this field.

Do not feel pressured to choose an option just because it pays higher. 

On the contrary, build your goals and expectations purely on what you want to achieve in your professional life. 

At this point, you must have at least some clarity in what direction you expect to move.

Define your short-term goals

Having this clarity will let you plan for a short time. Try to figure out what your short-term actions are. Yet, for now, you are not required to plan five years ahead.

For example, determine a few areas where you’d want to see your professional and personal growth and formulate one goal for each of them. Check the sample below:

  • Education: Graduate from XYZ University with honors
  • Learning: Finish programming courses and finally get certified in Python
  • Skills Development: Advance conversational Spanish and start a new language
  • Professional Membership: Enter a professional association to strengthen networking and communication

Establish your long-term objectives

Long-term objectives should stem from your ability to accomplish short-term ones. It’s not that they are very much connected. 

Short-term goals define your immediate future, the one you can project. 

Long-term ones, however, should include these achievements and allow you to plan further.

For every career scenario you have in your head, define the following:

  • Skills to acquire: Think of technical and soft skills that you don’t have, but that might be useful in your career
  • Experience to gain: Determine what experience would make you stand out from the crowd
  • Professional development: Can you professionally grow in five or ten years? Are you ambitious enough to claim C-level or Board roles?
  • Length of employment: How many years are you willing to spend in this role? What will make you retire or change jobs?

Make sure you are flexible and adaptable in your goals

You are not required to stick to the plan 100%. The world is changing rapidly. You need to have a plan, but you are actually required to make some changes. It’s critical to remain realistic and ensure that the goals are still attainable or relevant.

Set your calendar notifications to remind you that you need to review your planning for the next five to ten years every year or two. It’s also a good opportunity for self-reflection, so don’t be lazy.






Hopefully, the algorithm described above will help you get a better understanding of your career ambitions and career goals. Also, if written down, this plan will keep you track of your progress and stay motivated.

However, do not feel obliged to follow the goals if that plan no longer fits the situation. Let yourself adjust your career goals and be happy building a successful path for yourself.

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