It’s that time again: Ringing in a new year means taking time to reflect on last year’s accomplishments and make career resolutions for 2015.
Successful careers are part planning, part luck. In short, success is about paying attention to tips, advice, interactions – and data! – and knowing how and when to accelerate your plans, or change the course of your career.
With Boomers getting ready for retirement, and Millennials working their way to becoming nearly half the workforce, companies are struggling to engage five different generations. And each generation is struggling with how organizations handle their own career development. That’s where I can help! No matter what generation you’re part of, there are practical things you can do to take your career into your own hands:
1. Be proactive about developing your skills.
Take the time to work on developing skills that will move you forward in your career. Attend a webinar or two. Seek mentors and coaches. Leverage MOOCs (free online courses) and your company’s LMS for internal training opportunities. Pick up a new book, or download a few eBooks on your topics of interest.
2. Put a personal touch on career planning with networking.
Joining a professional group or attending a social event can be a game-changer for your career. LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook have made it easier to create and develop relationships across time zones and physical locations. Social media helps you connect with experts and shadow them (virtually, that is!), plus it’s a way to enhance networking inside your organization through outside channels. Of course, if you haven’t tapped into your internal social and collaboration platform – like Saba Cloud – then you should do that, too.
3. Take on responsibility without waiting to be told.
Many employees wait to act until they’re formally given responsibility. But the truly valuable employees are the ones who take initiative. Today’s employees have more autonomy and freedom to develop and leverage their talents and skills in ways that demonstrate leadership, initiative and ingenuity. Take action. Be proactive. This is how companies identify their future leaders.
4. Use smart technology to assess multiple career paths.
Sure, you can have discussions about your career path and map out a plan, but leveraging technology can really open your eyes to new possibilities. Career pathing solutions allow you to model various pathways by selecting timeframes and pairing them with a different job – or your current role. For each timeframe, these tools show skills, goals and learnings associated with each role so you can see how your current skills stack up. You can even call out if you wish to advance through an individual contributor or management track. These solutions can recommend internal moves and open positions which you may not have considered otherwise.
What was your biggest win in 2014? What are you hoping to accomplish in 2015?
Share your new year’s career resolutions and past year’s highlights in the comments below, or add your tips for taking your career into your own hands.