It’s cold. It’s gloomy. The twinkling lights have been taken down and those “back-to-work blues” are unavoidable. But that doesn’t mean they need to linger. A new year means a new opportunity for a fresh start at work. Now, as you return to the workplace in 2019, there are a few things you can do to ensure you start the year off right.
1. Set goals. Even if you’re not in the habit of setting career goals, make a point to identify where you are now and where you want to be at this time next year.
2. Document your successes. Take stock of your accomplishments. Make a list of what you’ve done and create a forward-focused resume and online profile to highlight these wins.
3. List new skills you’ll need. You’ll likely need new skills to move ahead with your career plans, so strategize about how you can get them.
4. Manage your reputation. You’re nothing without your reputation; make sure that your reputation speaks for itself. How can you influence what other people know about you? Create attractive online profiles in all of the networks you intend to use. LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook are all useful and allow you to post streams of information to highlight your experience and expertise.
5. Keep an eye on the future. Have you thought about the outlook for your company and industry? Now is a good time to start thinking about the outlook for next year and beyond.
6. Break out of your rut. Be honest: is it time to take on something new? If you’ve been doing the “same old” for years, now may be the perfect time to plan for a change.
7. Join a professional association or take a more active role in one where you are already a member. Professional organizations provide many opportunities to volunteer. Look for a small job to start, and plan to ramp up your involvement, especially if you have career aspirations that involve using leadership skills or can benefit from networking.
8. Be flexible. It’s difficult to go very far at work if you aren’t flexible. Try your best to be open to new ideas and new ways of doing things.
9. Make new friends. You’ve heard that networking is the best way to get a job; take that advice to heart and make a point to expand your circle of contacts.
10. Keep an eye on the important things. Don’t forget to stop and smell the proverbial roses. If you’ve been neglecting your health, your family or friends, make a point to address those concerns in the New Year and you’ll be more likely to be successful in your work life as well.
Whether you’re satisfied in your career or looking for something better, make the New Year a year of action. You can build your relationship network, learn new skills or really master the ones you have. Whatever it is, seize the day and it will set you up for more success now and in the years ahead.
(written by: wc)