Here are 5 tips to help you take charge of your career in 2018:
1. Identify Your Goal
Identify what you most want to achieve in your professional life in 2018. What do you want to be or do differently this coming year? Is your goal to change direction, become a better leader, or go for that promotion? No matter what your goal is, it’s essential that you are very clear what it is and why it’s important to you. Once you’ve got that clarity, you’re ready for the next step. Write out your goal before moving on.
2. Take Inventory
When reflecting on the past year, make a list of your strengths, skills, successes and unique work experiences. It’s important to have this list handy because it:
· Makes you realize all you’ve accomplished
· Helps you see your value to the organization
· Provides you with ideas for new opportunities and skills to acquire
· Boosts your confidence
So, take out a sheet of paper and start making your inventory list. You may be surprised at all you’ve accomplished and have to offer.
Explore educational opportunities such as certification programs, trainings and seminars to round out your skill set, make you the subject matter expert, and keep your existing skills fresh and current. The more you learn, the more likely you are to contribute that extra value to projects. From this, you get greater visibility and respect from peers and stakeholders. Soon you’ll be highly sought after. And all of this helps you advance in your career.
What can you commit to learning this year that will add to your skill set and enable you to provide even more value?
Now that you’ve got your inventory list, use it to update your resume and LinkedIn profile. Always have your resume and LinkedIn profile up-to-date because you never know when a job opportunity will knock at your door. And when you get that knock, you want your resume and LinkedIn profile to be ready to go!
What needs to be updated on your resume or LinkedIn profile? If you have significant updates to make, do them in batches. But start with the most important updates so they get done as soon as possible.
Sally Krawcheck says, “Networking is the #1 unwritten rule of success in business.”
Networking is the art of establishing and maintaining relationships. It’s essential for advancing in your career. LinkedIn reports that:
- 70% of people in 2016 were hired at a company where they had a connection
- 80% of professionals consider professional networking to be important to their career success
- 61% of professionals agree that regular interaction with their professional network can lead the way into possible job opportunities
Who should you network with? Network with present coworkers, managers, business associates, university alumni, college professors, family, friends ... the list is endless.
Make a list: Who do you want to network with next year?
6. BONUS TIP: Make Time
Taking inventory of your successes, committing to learning something new, updating your resume and LinkedIn profile, and making a list of people you’d like to network with, all require time and planning.
So, be sure to set aside time in your calendar to do this work. Just like scheduling a client or meeting, schedule yourself and your goals in your calendar. The week between Christmas and New Year’s can be ideal to do this work because things are typically slower. Remember, this time is an investment in you and you are worth it!
You can take charge of your career in 2018. And now is the time to start. Use the tips outlined above to set your goal, make a plan, and take action. Take charge of your career and make 2018 your best year yet.