Change can happen anytime, but there’s something to be said for making a fresh start in the New Year. It’s one of the best times to examine our career trajectory and where we want to be by the end of the year.
If you’re thinking about making a change, it can be hard knowing where to start. Here are a few tips to help you shift gears in your career and start creating a new path toward achieving your goals.
Consider your dream role
You may not be 100% certain what you want your career to look like this year, so instead of thinking big picture, think about the kinds of tasks or projects you enjoy working on. Whether you want to hone your coding skills or work more closely with people instead of being in front of the computer all day—consider what would make you feel most fulfilled.
Perhaps you have friends or mentors that you look up to who have interesting career profiles that you’d like to emulate, you can simply start by asking them questions about what they do and how they got to where they have.
Re-assess your skills
As we progress through our career, it can be easy to fall into the routine of applying for the same types of roles and getting bored with the work. Take some time to sit down and go through your resume, add any new skills you have and think about whether you have any gaps in your knowledge. Today’s online landscape is very fast paced, and new skills are needed to keep up, so it’s a good idea to know what you have and where you can improve.
Browse job roles on LinkedIn and other job sites and examine what the job requirements are, perhaps there’s an area you could improve? Many roles today require a multitude of skills rather than just specialisations so this is your chance to see what the landscape in your industry looks like. Career research can also mean meeting people face to face, whether that’s a career coach or a mentor, to take a closer look at your career pathway.
Fill in any knowledge gaps
There are many courses available both online and offline that can help you hone your skills and improve your job prospects. These can add arsenal to your resume and improve your marketability. The most important thing you can do for your career is to keep learning and challenging yourself because this is the best way to get better.
In your downtime, it can help to set some time aside to read. Often, we get caught up in social media and reading articles online, which can be great—but if you need more of a plan of action, self-development books can be incredibly helpful. Great examples of books that can teach you how to approach your career to achieve success include Pivot: The Only Move That Matters Is Your Next One by Jenny Blake, The Start-Up Of You by Reid and Hoffman and Designing Your Life by Bill Burnett and Dave Evans.
Join a professional organisation, association or group
Professional associations are organisations created for professionals working in the same or similar fields. They can help assist you to further in your career through ongoing learning and development. You can find these associations through your workplace, or simply by searching Google for professional organisations within your industry. Being part of a community of professionals can certainly help you get your head into gear when it comes to your career.