It is yet only a few days into the New Year and as usual the “lists” are probably getting longer or even shorter with each passing day or perhaps floating around in your wallet, ironed out by your fridge magnet or like myself, on my little “whiteboard”. I’m sure you know what I’m on about, the fated ANNUAL New Year’s Resolutions
So what exactly have you decided to do? Are your plans or lists achievable or are they the usual 2-3 week strong effort and 11 months and 1 week grumble and regret for even bothering to think you’d do what you wrote?
I’ll tell you mine, well the first and main one!
Projections NOT resolutions – My (Emmanuel) 2015 went as fast as a bullet and my 2015 resolutions list became a distant memory long before spring. So after lamenting on my failures of 2015 my little eureka was to
cheat a little ahem! simply change the wording (very easy right?). So, no resolution this year but achievable, meaningful, valuable yet exciting projections that I can quantify or evaluate at the end of the year. This, as a starting point, I was forced to set realistic targets! At least with target i can have a focus and it trumps an unrealistic resolution which is akin to you dreaming of marrying the queen and becoming King of England…it’ll never happen and you know it 🙂
Dust off the old profile and refresh anew – all the baggage of 2015 and whatever associated failures are now history. So create for yourself a new profile. This could be your consultancy page, your new business card, your LinkedIn profile or blog profile. Perhaps it could be your resume or CV.
Are there things you did or achieved in 2015 that you have not included in your CV? Or better still are you one of those who in 2016 still hasn’t got round to doing that first CV? Well I won’t mention names here (just yet) but it is time to dust off the old files and shelves to see how much you have done previously than can help you refresh your memory of your abilities, skills and expertise. If you don’t already have a CV or not sure how to get started with one, why not book a meeting with a careers adviser in 2016 or have a look at career sites, there are many useful templates to get you started on creating a top CV. As a starter, our articles from 2015 on writing a winning CV and common CV mistakes can help you along the way.
Do you have a career plan for 2016 – regardless of whether you are a student or an established professional having a plan for the next phase of your career should always be right on your agenda. A senior colleague advised me when I started my academic role to always have my mind on the next role and according to him that was the advice he was given over 30 years ago when he was a postdoctoral scientist. I also find it true as my long term mentor always keeps me abreast of new opportunities in the field which keeps me fresh, updated and aware of the constant dynamics and changes in the sectors of my inclination. Also, it helps me focus and ensures I stay relevant.
So career wise, what would you like to have achieved at the end of 2016?
What do you need for a career plan? Very simple! A bit of knowledge of what you would like to achieve armed with a pen, a sheet of paper and a realistic, ruthless yet optimistic mindset. If in doubt, get in touch with us and we can guide you on how to go about putting together a career plan.
Be mentored or find someone to mentor in 2016 – I have a passing interest in international politics (be patient – there’s a point here) I always often wondered why certain countries in the developing world struggled and continue to struggle in terms or development or progress and one common denominator for me amongst other things was the unending practice of “starting over and over” i.e. reinventing the battered wheel. Whereas successful countries often practice politics of “continuity” i.e. following on the footsteps of previous success and learning from the past. Now don’t get bored already. This applies to the day to day situations we are faced with.
Having someone who has gone through what you are about to and succeeded or even failed is always a good starting point to help you focus your attention on the right trajectory for your career or other objectives, be it, setting up a business, going back to school or buying shares in a company, whatever you are thinking of doing, usually someone has gone there or tried to…find that someone!!
Personally, I have had a mentor for the last decade who was once my master supervisor but has stuck with me throughout my career journey every step of the way and I am all the better for it. Now I have other mentors but having someone who knows where I have come from and where I am going is beneficial to my career planning and objectives.
On the other hand, whilst you are getting mentored this year, why not also give mentoring a try, believe me, it is rewarding! Find someone you can practice your mentoring skills on too as “it is better to give than to receive” right? Maybe not! Depends on your disposition
Who would you like in your network in 2016? – having an idea or wish list of the type of person you would like to network with this year is important. Do you know that man or woman at the top of the sector you are striving to reach is only a few clicks or referrals away from you?
Is it your dream to meet Bill Gates? Richard Branson or other influential figures like that? 2016 could be that year for you. Perhaps it is time for you to revisit your LinkedIn profile or to create one and see who made it into your network in 2015.
A very interesting article by Porter Gale, the author of “Your Network is Your Net Worth” highlighted the value of your connections to your happiness.
Be it social networking or the old traditional networking, investing in the right relationships can improve your prospects for success and happiness.
Would you like to know more about how to create a network, read our articles on networking and to know more about how to expand your social network professionally, Amara’s article on developing your online social presence can help you navigate through with ease.
So just imagine! It’s New Year Eve 2016, glass of wine to hand and you are reviewing your year. What would you be happy knowing you have accomplished?
From the Aspiring Professionals Hub, We wish you all a Happy New Year!!
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