10 Career-Focused New Year’s Resolutions

By Katherine Muniz
December 29, 2017

There’s nothing quite like starting the new year with a purposeful New Year’s resolution. The decision and determination to make a new goal and reach it in the New Year is a guiding force for us as we try to break bad habits, improve ourselves, and make healthier life choices.

However, resolutions can sometimes fall to the wayside, especially when they’re unattainable. In order to attain success with long-term goals, sustainable action is crucial. We spoke with several career experts for tips on resolution-making and how to turn the page on your career in 2018.

  1. “One of the primary challenges with New Year’s resolutions is a lack of proper mindset,” says Michele Battershell, Director of Career Services at National Career Education. “While most New Years’ resolutions are focused on the tangible (ie., lose xx lbs, make more $$), it is far more effective to focus on attitude and mindset, and the tangible results are more likely to follow with less effort. Accept that you are ultimately in control, and avoid blame. Believe in and see opportunities that are aligned with the true you. Commit to doing what it takes.”
  2. “Spend at least an hour a week in your professional development,” says Jennifer Braganza, Success Champion, Coach & Speaker at Exponential Success. “Put an hour recurring meeting on your calendar.  During that hour, you can read articles, books, or take training offered by your company.”
  3. “Start a plan/reflect journal,” says Ms. Braganza. “Ideally, you could spend 5-15 minutes doing this at the end of each day.  Alternatively, you could do this as a weekly activity.  Essentially, you ask yourself three questions (1) What am I proud of that I accomplished, (2) who am I grateful for or who did something I should recognize and (3) what do I need to do tomorrow/next week.”
  4. “Make a list of 3 things you’d like to learn this year,” Julia Holian, Career Strategist & Strengths Coach at Julia Holian & Associates. “Identify what resources or connections you need to learn and then set a plan for securing those things. This could come in the form of educational classes, on the job training, leadership skills, industry insights, etc.”
  5. “Get out there,” says Nate Masterson,  a Marketing Manager for Maple Holistics. “I’m naturally quite an introverted person so I know how much of a challenge it can be to talk to people sometimes – especially strangers or people in a professional, even a friendly context. But this is your personal hurdle and once you build up your confidence, you can allow yourself to build valuable relationships and lasting friendships which may help you on your way to achieving those goals.”
  6. “Be a mentor and a mentee,” says Ms. Braganza. “This can be through a formal program or informally.  Find someone you can meet with regularly who can provide you advice and be a sounding board for you.  As important, find someone who you can mentor or guide.”
  7. “Update your LinkedIn Profile,” says Caitlin Morse, Senior Corporate Communication Consultant at Chubb. “LinkedIn is the #1 site recruiters use to find talent. Take time to update your LinkedIn profile so you can be noticed by recruiters and/or further build your business network for career purposes. Ensure you have a professional photo and that all your contact information is accurate and up to date. Provide key highlights for the roles you’ve had throughout your career.”
  8.  “If you want to advance your career and make more money speak with your HR Manager or direct manager TODAY to request regular performance reviews in the upcoming year,” says Rudeth Shaughnessy of Copy My Resume. “Shoot for quarterly performance reviews and settle for nothing less than twice yearly reviews. If you KNOW you have reviews coming up then you can confidently work hard to have material to present to request a raise or promotion at a scheduled date.”
  9. “It’s important to have resolutions that aren’t simply fixes or solutions to things that are “broken or wrong” with your life; instead, create intentions that inspire you to move forward,” says Career Coach Catherine A. Wood of Unbounded Potential. “Perspective is everything. Choose a perspective that propels you forward versus holding you back—create resolutions that inspire you to fuel your momentum and creativity, thus bringing you more joy and supporting you in being more mindful of those other areas you can work on as well.”
  10. “Join an affinity group – it can be work-sponsored or professional society,” says Ms. Braganza. “Most groups may meet monthly.  Find one that is in your current industry/profession or one you are considering.  These groups are an easy way of growing your networking and learning more about an industry/profession.”

By creating a sustainable goal and practicing accountability and perseverance, you can remain committed to your New Year’s resolution all throughout 2018.

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