New Year’s resolutions tend to be bold, ambitious, and… oh well, unrealistic. This is also the case if you are targeting a career progression or even a career switch. Telling yourself to make drastic changes in your life almost always backfires because such goals aren’t SMART: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Timely.
Rather than saying that you want to master French, you might say that you want to learn French (basic level at least) over the next one year by taking up part-time courses at least once a week. Now you have more than a resolution—you have a strategy. Similarly, you’ll need to do more than simply say that you want to have career progression or land your dream job in 2014.
Answer the following questions:
What position in your current company do you hope to assume? What industry or sector do you want to work in? Do you want to stay local or are you willing to move? How much do you need to earn?
To meet your goal, how many additional projects do you think you want to take up to gain substantial credibility within the company? How many resumes will you send out per week? How many networking events will you attend each month?
Find out how you can write powerful resumes here.
Here are some tips to supercharge your networking efforts.
Do you understand the difference between your dreams and your goals? Keep in mind that some things are beyond your sphere of influence. You cannot control how many interviews or offers you get, but you can set a goal for the number of business connections you’ll make each month.
Find out how you can remain valuable at your workplace here.
What can you achieve right now? If you have little experience, it’s unlikely you can move directly into a C-level job. Be honest with yourself about what you can achieve right now.
When is your deadline? This aspect of goal setting is often overlooked, but deadlines are important motivators. Since you can’t control when you’ll receive your promotion or when you’ll get hired, you may find that a resolution such as “I will find a job within the next six months” is less effective than “I will apply for at least five job postings this week.”
You need to have SMART Goals! SMART: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Timely… (Click to tweet this)
Here are some actionable steps you can take to achieve your goal in 2014:
Sure we can learn some tips and tricks from people who actually manage to keep their New Year’s resolutions here, but here are 3 straightforward steps you can easily take to achieve your professional goals.
Develop — To keep your skills current, relevant and valuable! Continue your professional development while you look for work. Look for continuing education classes at local colleges or consider a free online course from Coursera, Khan Academy or even Udemy. You can even learn a foreign language online with Duolingo. Remember to update these new skills and knowledge into your comprehensive resume via biipmi.com, your online employability platform.
Improve — Communications skills are one of the most sought-after attributes amongst employers. No matter your field, being able to precisely and persuasively express yourself is a useful skill.
Network — Many are resistant to networking, but it is one of the best ways to find the opportunity of your dreams. Make a plan to participate in between two and four networking opportunities per month. Here are some tips to supercharge your networking efforts.
PS: Not enough? Here are 11 manageable New Year’s resolutions that can actually have a measurable impact on your life
Have a great 2014!
Anfernee Tan | Operations Director, biipmi Pte Ltd
Anfernee Tan is the co-founder and also the chief editor of biipmi.print. He oversees all marketing initiatives for content and channel optimization across multiple networks to drive engagement, retention, leads and positive experience for the individual users and business owners. He is a career coach, an adult educator, and an entrepreneur with special interest towards employability, digital media, content marketing and brand strategy. Check out what he has to say!