If you are keen to develop your career further this year, then ensure that you have some New Year resolutions to help your career. To guide you, here in Catherine’s Career Corner, we have provided you with six resolutions to help get you started.
Be proactive: Take responsibility for your career this year. Don’t blame anything on your circumstances, boss, colleagues and organisation. Know how to choose your behaviour when it comes to your career. Make it your responsibility to choose the best language to describe how you see yourself progressing this year. Use proactive language to make your career plans – say I can, I will, I prefer, etc. Demonstrate the career behaviour that mirrors pro-activity. Take control, focus, allocate your time and energy wisely on the things that you can control in your career. Focus your efforts on your Circle of Influence. Be sure to gain an awareness of the areas in which you expend your energy this year. This is a giant step in becoming productive, organised and successful.
Set clear, challenging but achievable goals: For your career this year, set achievable goals. Print off affirmations that pertain to your goals and post the affirmations on your computer desk at home or at work. Everyday you should look at these affirmations and stay in line to make them reality.
Once you set some goals for yourself, remember to break the large tasks in the goals down into smaller tasks, as this will make them less overwhelming. Give yourself more time for each goal and follow through. Be Realistic – one of the most difficult parts of goal setting is making goals realistic. Begin by setting a small goal that you can accomplish in a week. Then, after meeting the goal, try another smaller goal to accomplish in a couple of weeks, scale the small goals up to a month, two months, six months and a year. By creating smaller goals, you are constantly succeeding. This is great for your confidence and will help you to get closer to your overall final goal.
In addition, don’t forget to create a timeline – give your self a small timeline for each small goal. This is the best way to keep things on track. Envision the Big Picture and always keep it in mind. Your small goals all lead up to the big picture. They are like puzzle pieces that are helping you create a beautiful product. So, remember the big picture, but don’t stress over it.
Share your career goals with your supporters: One great thing to do is to have supportive people that will help you along the way in ensuring that you adhere to achieving the career goals that you have set. A mentor, your family member or your best friend will be your ideal supporter. Tell them about your goals and let them know that you will appreciate any support that they can give you.
Embrace technology, update and make yourCV available: The job market is in a transition stage when it comes to hiring. Today, is not enough to have just a CV. Instead, you need to craft a brand both online and offline to present to a prospective employer. This needs to include a CV and an online profile as well as create an easy way for a prospective employer or recruiter to find you. Spend some time to rewrite your CV even if you don’t plan to change jobs anytime soon, chances are you won’t remember the details of your accomplishments from last year down the road if you don’t include them now. Your CV should detail your achievements in bullet points. Your CV will stand out for potential employers only if it showcases your accomplishments.
To be present online, you need to embrace technology. For instance, if you are not on LinkedIn, it is time to maintain a profile there – it is good for your career. An online networking presence is no longer just an option but a requirement for your career. As rightly implied by Wendy Enelow, the author of “Expert Resumes for Managers and Executives” and “Best Resumes for $100,000+ Jobs, “In today’s executive search market, if you’re not on LinkedIn, you don’t exist,” she continues, “Make it easy for recruiters and hiring managers to contact you with one click to your email and one click to your LinkedIn profile.”
Network: Remember, your network is not just your immediate friends. Don’t equate networking with speaking to your friends. While friends are one part of your network, they are not the likeliest career boosting network. First of all, unless they are in your target job or industry, they may not know anyone in your field or even understand it well enough to be helpful. Instead think of your network as anyone who would have a potential affinity to help you. Go through your entire life and career, and look for colleagues from all of your past jobs. LinkedIn makes it very easy to find people from a specific organization or in the role you seek. Network like there is no tomorrow. Help your network help you by being clear about what you value. Be careful though; don’t ask your network for a job outright. That will be seen as presumptuous of you, especially if you are connecting with people who don’t know you as well. However do ask your network for information. Let them know that you are doing a research into specific areas. Have something intelligent to say about your area and a clear agenda for your discussion so they know you are serious and won’t waste their time.
Your next job: What do you want to do next? In another year, three or five years from now, where do you want to be? Decide and start figuring out how you can get there. Can your boss help you? Speak to your boss, mentor and champions, ask them what you can do today, tomorrow, next week and next month to get closer to your next job? Who else and what can help you make it happen? Make a plan and stick to it. By focusing on all the New Year resolutions above, you are nearer to your next role or goal than you think.