The New Year is a great time to start thinking about a new career, new challenges and setting some new tangible job-related goals. (Some) individuals come back from the holiday period feeling refreshed and armed with resolutions to enhance their career prospects. 2018 brings on the opportunity to reflect on your career and think about which direction you might want to go in the future. This could include improvements to your career, upskilling, it could be continuing with an existing job search, changing career or even that next step up. This article discusses some useful hints and tips to when evaluating your career in 2018.
Take the time in the New Year to re-evaluate your career. Are you moving in the right direction? If the answer is no, think about what you need to do to ensure you achieve your goals in 2018. Why are you looking for a new job? Do you just need a new challenge or do you want to take on more responsibilities? Do you need further training? Do you lack certain skills? How will you overcome this? Be proactive and set yourself Specific Measureable Achievable Realistic Timely (SMART) goals and put them on your 2018 planner so you know what you need to do and by when. Tick them off when you have and reward yourself each time you achieve each goal.
As the New Year is traditionally a time for change, you may be considering changing direction in your career. Take some time to conduct a self-analysis and think carefully about what you want. You need to consider your interests and values, not just in a working environment but also from a personal perspective. Utilising tools such as psychometric tests will help with this. They can quite often suggest environments your personality is best suited to, or types of organisations your values would fit best with. Think about the things you have valued about previous employers you have worked for. Also think about what specific skills you want to use in your next role and what are your key priorities.
Update your CV, who knows what the New Year may bring, so when you see a fantastic opportunity with a short deadline, you can use your time to tailor it to meet the exact requirements rather than rushing to put one together. After all of the networking you have done in December at Christmas parties, make sure you take the time to follow up by connecting on LinkedIn or sending an email and keeping in touch.
If you are thinking of a change in direction your CV will need to reflect your transferable skills. You need to be able to sell your transferable skills and demonstrate how you have added value to the organisations you have worked for in the past to appeal to any potential employer using a Functional CV. A traditional Chronological CV format will put an emphasis on what you have done in each role – including where and when. This format of CV works well if you are wanting to demonstrate where you have shown career progression or if you have been using the skills the employer is looking for recently. However, a chronological CV may not be suitable and it will be better for you to use the functional format if you are;
You may want to use the New Year to think about upskilling and improving or adding to existing skills and knowledge. Take some time to conduct a skills gap analysis by researching job descriptions, revisiting personal development reviews and identifying weaknesses. Be proactive in determining how you could fill the gaps. Think about the skills you lack or that require improvement, which skills or qualifications would enhance your career prospects, maximise productivity and make you more adaptable in the workplace. Be proactive in determining how you could fill these gaps. You could enrol in an online course, full-time or part-time or you could take up a related volunteer position to give you some practical experience and insight. Look at the ways you can develop relevant transferable skills such as leadership, coaching or budget management. You may want to enhance your expertise in a certain subject or an upcoming trend, set up Google Alerts and become a subject matter expert through demonstrating your interest in the field and staying up to date with changes and recent news.
Now is the time to think about the organisations you have always dreamed of working for – who are they and how do they recruit? Follow them on LinkedIn and Twitter so you are first to hear about potential recruitment opportunities. Use January to start drawing up a list of organisations that you would like to work for. Think about people in your network who could introduce you to certain companies or provide recommendations. Can you send them a copy of your CV with a tailored cover letter telling them how you could make a difference to their company in 2018? Have it ready to send during the start of the year when they are setting their business goals.
Renovo is one of the UK’s leading providers of outplacement and career transition support. We work with both organisations and individuals to support all their career transition requirements. If you would like to understand how Renovo can help you please call 0800 612 2011 or email firstname.lastname@example.org