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Career resolutions you should make in 2018

It should not go without saying that making resolutions is the easiest part, committing to their achievement is a day o day journey that entails discipline and focus.

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It should not go without saying that making resolutions is the easiest part, committing to their achievement is a day o day journey that entails discipline and focus.

As the saying goes, "Today is the first day of the rest of your life," it's never a bad time to start moving your career in a better direction. Maybe you did not achieve all your goals last year and maybe you’ve not grown as you would have hoped to. It’s alright. It happens to the best of us.The good thing is the New Year has come to wash away yesterday’s mistakes. Forget about 2017, it’s gone!Here are some new year resolutions that can help steer you in the right direction and grow:

• Pay attention and be keen- Treat every workday like a school day. Be sure you learn something and use it to make yourself more productive. It doesn't have to relate to your skills set. It may be as simple as understanding how to work with specific peers or improving your emotional intelligence. Take mental notes. Don't sleepwalk through the day.

• Understand company goals- Make sure you understand how your job contributes to your company's business objectives. Are you in a revenue-generating role? A brand-awareness role? Is your mission to delight the customer? Knowing how your job fits into the big picture will give you inspiration and a sense of accomplishment—and will help you understand your job's impact.

One weakness that employees have is telling themselves that they don’t need to know a lot about the company. This is unfortunate and wrong. Your job level does not matter, be interested in knowing the company’s strategic direction, the various long and short-term objectives, have some informal conversation with managers in order to understand a little bit more about the business. This will increase your knowledge and at the same time place you in the minds of your superiors as someone with potential for growth.

• Stay healthier at work- Everyone is concerned about health Losing weight is one of the most common New Year's resolutions out there.You spend a lot of time at work, so consider what you can do for your health while you’re there.Try to think of some simple ways to stay healthier at work. Pack a sensible lunch, Take the stairs, get up and stretch every hour, have an evening walk from the office. Think small and you’ll find that those little things add up.

• Learn a new Skill- No matter what field you are in, there are hundreds of new skills you can learn that could benefit your career. Is there one you’ve been meaning to learn? Set it as one of your work goals for the year and get it done. You won’t regret it. If it can enhance your work in your current job, your company might even be willing to pay for it

• Read- Reading does wonders for your mind. No matter your job, there is a book out there that can improve your performance, your outlook or your personal habits. Even if you think you already know what you need to know, reading a great book on professional development can give you a new perspective.

• Create at least one new professional network per month- There’s no downside to increasing the size of your professional network. You probably meet new people all the time, but do you take the time to listen, grab their business card, and connect with them? Try to find at least one person per month to add to your LinkedIn connections and watch your network blossom.

• Be ethical- Bring integrity to your job. Whether you're running the company or cleaning its restrooms, be honest in all you do. Don't call in sick just to get a day off—that's stealing. Put in an honest day's work. Be accountable. If you're working remotely, be sure you are. Do what you say you're going to do. Honesty and reliability mean a lot to your supervisors. More and more companies are shifting their focus from brains to life skills. Your Intelligence will be overlooked if you do not have the moral character to support it. Be courteous, polite, watch your personal etiquette and groom yourself well. They say that our body language speaks much louder than the words we speak.

• Stretch your role- Occasionally think how you can go above and beyond. Are there projects outside your defined role you could help with? Be proactive; ask to join. Come up with your own ideas, and work with your manager to implement them. Trust me, this won’t go unnoticed. 

• Work-life balance- Ensure you maintain a balanced work life. Make time for your family, yourself and work. Have fun, work hard but smile while at it. Approach each day with a positive spirit and don’t overthink things. Work should not completely take up your entire life. People who can do this normally turn out to be more productive.

We are all managers, regardless of title, rank, profession, or the size or function of the organizations that employ us. We all manage ourselves and our own careers and we can all improve our careers by embracing new resolutions. However, it should not go without saying that making resolutions is the easiest part, committing to their achievement is a day o day journey that entails discipline and focus. So as you set your new resolutions, ask yourself this question, “Are you truly committed to achieving them?”

Written by

Kelvin Mokaya

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