Posted by Michelle Johanson on Monday, January 27, 2014 - 00:00
In a previous blog post, I talked about some of the bad habits professionals make and how you can get on track in 2014 if they’re issues for you. As we get set to mark the Super Bowl about a month into the new year, it’s a good time to check in and reflect on where you’re at with your career goals. Are you still plagued by the same bad habits or have you made progress in accomplishing your resolutions?
My goal was to eliminate stacks of papers on my desk and rely more on a filing system. I’m proud to say I’ve made some improvement. I am down to one very small stack of papers and I even organized my standing files. If things aren’t going as well for you, though, here are some ways to get back in the game with your career goals:
Make Sure You Have a Winning Strategy
Take a new look at the resolutions you set for yourself. Were they realistic? If you’re naturally shy, for instance, expecting yourself to spontaneously speak up during meetings may not be an attainable goal in the near term.
Instead, think of baby steps you might take, like bringing notes with you if you plan on offering input, so you know what you’re about to say. As you build experience and confidence, you can ditch the notes and simply share what’s on your mind.
Formalize the Game Plan
Also do what you can to change the routine. One of the main reasons people fail at their career goals is that they fall back into bad habits. For instance, if you haven’t attended any administrative association events in the past year, then those meetings aren’t likely to be top of mind going forward, either.
To ensure you follow through with resolutions, put events in your calendar, so you’re getting reminders on your computer and cell phone. You’re far more likely to succeed if you formally schedule your new activities. This is effective even with small actions, like organizing your workspace at the end of every day.
Build a Team
Line up at least one other person who will hold you accountable. It’s even better if you share the same career goals. For instance, if you want to complete online training, see if any colleagues will join you with this objective. You’ll not only have others on your case if you don’t follow through, but you can benefit from knowledge sharing and relationship building.
In football, it takes a lot of work to finally make a touchdown. The same is true with career goals. Success may not happen overnight and you may even modify your plans as you move along. For instance, instead of aiming for a new job, you might pursue a promotion at your current company. Incorporate some flexibility into your plans and enjoy the process of working toward your objectives.
So, how far along are you with your own resolutions? What strategies are working well for you in achieving them?