5 Resolutions to Keep For Your Career in the New Year- Souvik Sil Sarma
The New Year is a time when all of us shrug off the dust of procrastination, and commit ourselves to a plethora of New Year’s resolutions, right from life goals like marriage or engagement, or fitness goals like losing weight, to education and career advancement goals like getting a promotion or enrolling in leadership training programs. Career improvements is incremental, so start small and build on what you achieve as you improve yourself and your quality of work over the course of the year. Here are a few ways to advance your career goals in 2021:
Expand and enhance your knowledge
There’s always a way to improve yourself, always more scope to learn the things you didn’t know before. In this fast changing knowledge-based world, we are all at risk of redundancy. And the pandemic has shown how traditionally accepted job roles became obsolete overnight. An estimate by researchers of the University of Chicago shows that 42% of recent layoffs will result in permanent job loss. The best way to keep yourself redundancy proof is to keep upgrading that skill portfolio of yours that is pertinent to your technology or industry space. You might take a course to learn or improve a skill that’s useful in your current position, or that will help you get the next one. You can also take a full-time advanced course to make the career jump you always wanted.
Improve your personal branding
How people perceive of you at the work place matters a lot to how your growth path would look like. Evaluate how your mentor, manager, colleagues or even your subordinates would think of you or talk about you when you are not around. In a meeting if someone says, “Hey Sunil, you did a good job on XYZ client, which improved our top-line massively.” That’s your branding. If a subordinate says, “Mr. Maurice has a good knowledge over the market dynamics and always gives us great feedback which helps us to target and acquire new clients.” That’s your branding. If you don’t pay attention to this, people will build their impression of you based on the things you say and do. Actively understand the way people think of you by being deliberate when it comes to talking about your achievements and results. Your personal brand is the sum total of your demeanour, appearance, courtesy, professionalism, the way you treat your friends and co-workers, and the way you present yourself online.
Make New Connections
Meeting new people in the industry you’re in helps keep you sharp, up-to-date and connected. When you consider a job change in the future, who you know will be of great value, so make it part of your job to know as many people as possible. Attend industry events, have your friends in the industry introduce you to their friends, support others in their professional endeavours, and this will broaden your horizon of professional reach. It's as simple as making friends in your own industry, it doesn't have to be contrived or transactional like an awkward networking event. Make it a point to go out and meet new people; it is the life force of your career, who knows the person you come across every day in the lift lobby turns out to be an entrepreneur and can have an exciting position for you.
Keep Track Your Progress
The most effective way of keeping track of your career goals, whether it be about learning a new skill, getting a certification, or meeting new people from your industry is to keep track of your progress. Set small and incremental goals that can be achieved in a month or a quarter. Your confidence will keep growing as you see your progress on paper, and it will motivate you to keep up your good work. One of my colleagues once told me she writes down what she wants to achieve in her diary under the date by which she would like to get it done. I find it a very effective way to keep track of progress while motivating myself to achieve it too.
Due to the competitive and ever challenging work environment of a corporate job, it is absolutely essential that you make sure to de-stress. You can resort to a good stretch, meditate, spend time with your loved one, breathe, go for a walk, hit the gym or get some exercise, or read. Finding a way to reduce stress in the moment, can help you to make clear headed decisions, something that helps change your frame of mind about a situation or helps you feel calm and less overwhelmed. Spending time with your family and loved ones is also very useful to de-stress. So take the much anticipated trip to an exotic location of your choice. The moment you are at peace with your internal conflicts you are better poised to take on the external challenges of your job and the world at large. To wrap it up, it is important to nurture all aspects of your career by taking steady steps to reach your goals, whilst also managing to find a balance in life. Taking care of your own wellbeing is key to performance and to being a positive and reliable team member. 2021 is a fresh year, and one where we can start making amends whilst moving forward onto the right direction.