RESOLVED: an adjective meaning: “firmly determined to do something.”

With the year being 2020, it seems only appropriate that we talk about clarity, focus, and vision for your career in this new decade.

Your New Year’s resolution for your career may be to obtain a promotion, get a raise or even start a new career, but have you created a clear plan to make those goals a reality? If not, you may have started the year by setting yourself up for failure. A more complete resolution might look more like this…

“I’d like a chance to take on a larger role in this company. To make this a reality, here’s what I am RESOLVED to do to make it happen…”

Tony Robbins is known for saying, “Setting goals is the first step in turning the invisible into the visible.” How does that resonate with you? 

If growing in your personal and career is important to you this year, below are ten actionable items that may help you obtain your goals:

  1. Further your education: Pursue professional and personal development classes and seminars that fit into the vision for your career. It’s helpful to take classes that nurture your passion, too. Dance, art, pottery – whatever it is, you’ll meet people and you’ll have things to talk about at the office.
  2. Enhance your team building and networking capabilities: Attend and/or organize events that  demonstrate your ability to bring people together
  3. Be known within the industry as a subject matter expert: Start a blog, write a paper, be a speaker about what your company does or facilitate a seminar.
  4. Mentor those who need development: Show your leadership skills.
  5. Give back to your community: Volunteer — whether it’s for a non-profit or an industry interest-based group. You’ll connect with like-minded folks and meet others that might be inspired by your commitment and dedication. Volunteering can lead to great opportunities that you might not have even known existed.
  6. Find a mentor or coach
  7. Use your performance review to learn what you need to do better to grow in your career
  8. NETWORK! Connect with people, learn about what they do, how you can help them, where they can help you and – stay in touch!
  9. Be a high performer in your organization
  10. Look at available jobs within your organization: Most organizations are interested in retaining strong performers. And, managers want to know how employees want to grow their careers. Be honest with your manager about how you’d like to grow in the organization and ask for coaching, guidance, and development. Practice interviewing with people you trust. You’ll gain valuable knowledge on what works and what doesn’t work so that when you speak with decision-makers regarding job opportunities you’ll be more relaxed and confident.

Another step is to talk to your HR department. Learn about the organization’s succession plans and ask what it takes to get a promotion. From there, create your plan for pursuing training and networking within the organization.

You may believe promotions are always given on merit. Often managers often make assumptions about their direct reports and desired roles that may not be correct. SPEAK UP! Let those who make the decisions know what your goals are and what you’re interested in. And remember, you probably have skills and experience your manager doesn’t even know about. 

If you have an interest in a new career path, let your manager know or you might be passed over for a role that interests you. Also, remember you need to speak up before the opportunity arises or you might miss out on a promotion for a position you never knew existed.

The key is to not sit back and wait to be noticed. Your career growth is your responsibility – TAKE CHARGE!