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Strategic planning: a tool for personal and career growth
  1. Ernest V Garcia
  1. Correspondence to Dr Ernest V Garcia, Department of Radiology and Imaging Sciences, Emory University, 101 Woodruff Circle, Room 1203, Atlanta, GA 30322, USA; ernest.garcia{at}

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This article has been written from the content of lectures that the author used at the Radiology Leadership Academy at Emory University and the Junior Faculty Career development lectures at the same institution. Although generic in nature, the content is intended for early healthcare professionals who have shown interest and promise to become leaders in their profession. Of course, this interest or awakening may occur at any point in the professional's career.

The original title of this material was ‘How to achieve career success’. It became evident that the ideal candidate to benefit from this material was a professional who by most metrics was already successful. These are professionals who succeeded at several levels of higher learning and obtained employment usually at a prestigious organisation such as at an academic and/or medical institution. It also became evident that for career accomplishments to be truly successful, it should not come at the cost, particularly a catastrophic cost, of an unfulfilled personal life. Thus, the emphasis of the message has shifted to growth rather than success and to a strategy to grow in both personal and career achievements. Success is subjective and about achieving goals, while growth is about the journey to get you to your destination. Regardless of the stage you are in your personal and professional life or your perceived level of success, the object should be continued growth.

Motivation for achieving greatness

The premise here is that you should continue to grow until achieving greatness; a recognition of eminence that facilitates the fulfilment of your personal and career vision (more about vision later). This goal is facilitated by the recognition that you are already great! All of us are high-level biological organisms that have survived and improved our fitness through many generations of evolution. As such you should trust your instincts. These …

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