2018 resolutions for career professionals
In this resolutions series, people that work in organizations ought to also set some targets in 2018 for their performance and growth. Here we are already completed almost two months in the new year. What are your performance improvement goals for 2018?
- I will remember what I was hired to do. I have been guilty of this: getting caught up in issues and concerns that have nothing to do with what I was hired to do. I personally have a ‘savior personality’, where I feel that if there is something in my power I can do that would help someone else I would do it. Sometimes this can get you sidetracked and derailed from your own goals and aspirations and while you are on that rabbit trail, the people you are worrying about are securing their own future. People with the savior personality are the ones who have a hard time saying no and will volunteer to help everyone else and not complete their own work, or end up having to do it in their own time to catch up. Be committed to you this year. It isn’t selfish at all and it certainly will improve your performance.
- I will focus on at least one thing I can improve about myself. We can all improve something about ourselves and our performance. Whether it is personal or professional, we should be able to target at least one thing that we can do better. Areas for personal growth could be greater sensitivity to others, networking more, more self-control, taking more calculated risks, or understanding what triggers certain responses or behaviors. Professional development can be learning a new skill, teaching someone else, getting a diploma, degree or certification, joining a professional association, or attending a conference. You may even have opportunity for growth in both areas. Whatever it may be, be committed to your own development this year.
- I will look for ways I can get out of my comfort zone. The comfort zone is the fast track to nowhere. In the comfort zone is where your fears are nurtured and the status quo celebrated. In the comfort zone is no growth, no advancement, and no progress. I’ve heard it said that often people with many years’ experience really only repeat the first year of experience they gained. In other words, what have they done to improve their skill set, knowledge base, or ability over the years? Getting out of your comfort zone will stretch you to achieve the things you perhaps were afraid of pursuing for so long. Are you afraid of speaking in public? Next time, volunteer to lead the meeting. Do you want to get noticed? Volunteer to support the next project. You can’t complain about what you tolerate or refuse to try.
- I will be accountable for my actions and results. It is so easy to blame others for situations and circumstances. While people, places, projects and circumstances do contribute to our state of being, we can determine just how much control they have over our actions and responses. In The 85% Solution by Linda Galindo, she states that if each person takes 85% responsibility for everything that happens around them, it will change how they perform and see life in general. Our natural reaction to this is, ‘85%? No way I’m taking accountability for all that! You don’t know what that person did.’ Taking accountability for your actions and results have nothing to do with others but everything to do with you. As the saying goes, it takes two to tango. We all have a part to play in the actions we take or the results we achieve. Did we do everything we could have in that situation? I’m sure the answer is no. Taking accountability drives us to do more and go deeper.
- I will design the career I want and commit to making it happen. As we continue to be people of evolution, we must realize that we have more power than we believe. There are people who are still succeeding despite the government, the economy, their mate, their neighbors, their education level, their toxic boss, every unfair circumstance, their past, their upbringing, or their failures. You have the power to create the career you want by simply visioning what you want, writing it down, and taking steps to achieve it. People fail either because of lack of planning, or lack of follow through, or lack of commitment to the process and journey of success.
We have the chance not only in a New Year but every day we live to make the choices that will lead us closer to a life of meaning, satisfaction and improvement. The choice is ours; the ball is in our court. How will you play the game?
- Simmone L. Bowe, MSc, SPHRi, is a seasoned human resources and organization development consultant and trainer, speaker, author, mentor and activist who focuses on helping business owners, leaders and professionals diagnose their people and performance problems and implement strategic solutions. For comments, queries and bookings, email firstname.lastname@example.org.