Missed your 2016 resolutions? Here's how not to miss them again
New Year resolutions don’t last long – sometimes they only last as long as your hangover. As 2016 draws to a close, it’s time to reflect on what has worked and what hasn’t worked, and to think about what you want to do differently next year.
Andy Teach, author of From Graduation to Corporation: The Practical Guide to Climbing the Corporate Ladder One Rung at a Time, believes in the importance of work resolutions. “It's fairly common for most people to have career-related New Year's resolutions because work is such an important part of our daily lives,” he writes. “Therefore, it's in our best interest to try to become better at what we do for a living.”
The main reason that people don’t stick to their resolutions is that they set too many of them or they’re unrealistic to achieve. We list down the top six work resolutions most people made in 2016 and how they can work towards achieving them in 2017:
Resolution #1: I will get a raise
If there’s one thing nearly every employee wants in the year ahead, it’s a raise. But it isn’t simple to wangle one, so most of us end the year at almost the same salary we started with.
How to make it happen next year: It’s important to be able to tell your supervisor why you deserve the extra investment. Take stock of your accomplishments and collect solid market value data to make a case to bring to the table before requesting more money.
Resolution #2: I will get a promotion
Success at the workplace is synonymous with moving up the corporate ladder. But like asking for a raise, you find that getting yourself in line for a promotion isn’t easy.
How to make it happen next year: Wear a go-get-it disposition and review your work ethics and team skills. Volunteering for jobs that are not a part of your KRAs makes sure your boss notices you. Acing these jobs and meeting deadlines is another way to show that you're ready for more.
Resolution #3: I will develop new skills
Developing skills tops the resolution list, whether it’s a first-timer at the job or someone much more experienced. Taking the time to learn and excel at new skills can increase your sense of worth and put you in line for raises and promotions.
How to make it happen next year: Instead of making grandiose plans, enroll in a course or certification programme. Attending industry workshops and conferences can help you develop practical skills. Reading up on industry trends and related subjects gives you an edge.
Resolution #4: I will grow my professional network
Networking is extremely important, no matter which field you’re in, for it can open a lot of doors. Making connections can help you find mentorship, career advice and may lead to new job opportunities.
How to make it happen next year: The key to maximizing your professional network is to work at it actively and diversify it. Grow your network with people from different industries, backgrounds, age groups and ethnicities. Your network should include various kinds of people – the mentor, coach, insider, connector, trendsetter realist and visionary. Playing the numbers game isn't a good idea, since quality scores over quantity.
Resolution#5: I will get a new job in my field
You weren’t the only one who decided to leave your current job and move to a new organization. It could be a dead end job or the desire for a change of scenery, but a new job could propel you faster to progress.
How to make it happen next year: Finding a new job isn't easy, especially when you have one that you are used to. Let people know that you're looking for a change but share this information wisely. When possible, show prospective employers what you have done and what you are capable of. Update your resume and circulate it, and clean up your act on social media.
Resolution#6: I will go for a career change
Who doesn’t want to do what they love, love what they do? But completely switching your career track can be difficult, especially if you need to begin at the bottom with no formal experience.
How to make it happen next year: Stop thinking about your true calling, instead think of what you are good at, the skills you have and would like to learn, and the kind of work that will engage you. Highlight transferrable skills – those relevant in any field - when applying to new jobs. Work at gradually changing your career - may be working part time on the new career while retaining the old job.