New Year Career Resolutions
Each new year many of us make resolutions to improve our health, to create more balance in our lives, and to have a more fulfilling career. We promise ourselves that we will take action to ensure this year is positive and rewarding. As you begin 2013, consider how you can enhance your career by developing a greater understanding of your ideal job and of the contribution you would like to make through your work.
Jump Start Your Career in 2013
At some point in our career, most of us experience a stall that we find challenging to push through. In tough times, we feel fortunate just to keep our jobs and to work for an organization that isn’t winding down. At other times, our careers may plateau based on personal choices, such as having a family or by working fewer hours. These stalls or plateaus may be demonstrated by being passed over for a promotion, a moderate performance review or a less-than-desirable pay raise or bonus.
The three most common reasons a career can stall or plateau are:
- Boredom: Your role has become rote and lacks meaning. This can translate into disengagement, as you are no longer demonstrating the characteristics of an engaged employee.
- Underperformance: This can be the result of a changing work environment where new technology or the pace and volume of work increases such that it’s difficult to maintain your performance level.
- Reputation: Sometimes your reputation or perceived contribution level in the organization can hold you back. Senior leaders & managers may typecast you in a role or your reputation may be impacted by past errors.
How to jump start your career in 2013
The first step is to ask yourself some questions to determine if you are in the right type of role. These questions include:
- Does your job allow you to work with people who share your world view? Do you need to put on a persona to get through the day?
- Does your job challenge, stretch or change you? Are you enriching your brain power?
- Does your job, because of the organization or level of responsibility, open the door to future jobs?
- Does your job hold meaning for you? Is your work meaningful?
Answering these questions will help you determine if you are in the right role and, if you are not, how and where to look to make a change.
All four generations – Traditionalists, Baby Boomers, Gen Xers and Gen Ys – seek meaningful careers. However, the speed at which younger generations expect their career to be ‘fulfilling’ has increased.
Today’s employees are unwilling to spend years in a job that doesn’t align to their passions and goals. In particular, Gen Ys have been coached to find work that has meaning to them. They believe work should be fun and should be based on their values and interests.
On the other end of the spectrum, as Traditionalists and Baby Boomers approach retirement they may ask themselves how they want to spend their last few years of employment. Is their work meaningful enough? Have they had an opportunity to build a legacy and add value to the business?
Regardless of where you are in your career path, the new year is always a great time to take stock, evaluate how you can grow and evolve and determine what actions you can take to make 2013 a successful one.
Happy New Year!