Although many resolutions are focused on personal development—like losing weight or quitting smoking—many of them are catered toward professional development, such as getting a promotion or finding a better job. Since New Year’s resolutions are notorious for being abandoned by February, it’s important to approach your professional goals with a concrete plan within your reach. To discover some helpful tips on reaching your own New Year’s resolution, consider these.
Resolution #1: Get a promotion
Almost every working professional believes he or she should have a promotion, but a much smaller portion is actually working toward making this wish a reality. To get that coveted promotion, you have to put yourself in a position where you truly deserve it. This means working harder, investing more time and effort in your company by submitting ideas for improvement, and furthering your education to qualify for higher positions. The latter approach can be one of the best ways to show your boss you are a true go-getter. Although you may put your heart and soul into your work, you can still take advantage of educational opportunities by considering online alternatives to further your degree.
Resolution #2: Quit your job
Quitting your job puts you in a slightly less favorable position than the one presented above, but it doesn’t necessarily have to be a negative or dramatic step. New years are about new beginnings: out with the old and in with the new. If you’ve been slaving away at an unfulfilling job with little sign of advancement or improvement, quitting may be a pragmatic decision.
However, if you truly believe your decision is reasonable, then be reasonable in your approach. Submit a formal letter of resignation that respectfully discusses your decision with your boss and co-workers and gives the company adequate time to find a replacement and tie up loose ends. Leaving on good terms not only benefits the company, but also benefits you when searching for a new job.
Further reading at So You Want to Leave a Job You Hate.
Resolution #3: Find a job
Following resolution number two, finding a job can be one of the most difficult resolutions to achieve when the economic odds are against you. However, remaining diligent and assertive throughout your search will generally pay off in the end. The first thing you should do is use every resource possible to help you find a job. This could include connecting with the career services department at your alma mater, industry associations, networking groups, and former professors and peers to discover new job leads. All of these resources can put you in the right place to land the job you’ve been searching for.
Resolution #4: Improve your professional appeal
Improving your professional appeal usually goes hand in hand with any other professional goal or resolution you may have this year. To improve your professional appeal, and to avoid getting into a monotonous routine at work, you can work on your professional development by taking advantage of a number of opportunities. Education should be a number one focus, since it usually has the biggest impact on an employer’s opinion of you. Consider going back to school either in a traditional setting or online to enhance your degree. You can also take training courses relevant to your profession to obtain specialist certifications and give yourself extra credibility. If you’re not finding any luck in the job market, consider trying out internships to gain experience and develop connections with other professionals in your industry.
Making resolutions is easy, but keeping them is tough. Commit to following each step that gets you closer to a new job, and you might be celebrating next year with a better job and a promising career.
Further reading at 7 Little Known Ways to Jump Start Your Career this year.
Jesse Langley lives near Chicago. He divides his time among work, writing and family life. He writes on behalf of Colorado Technical University and has a keen interest in business blogging and social media.