Kick Off ‘New Work Year’ with Career Resolutions

By Toni Vranjes

September 3, 2012 1 Comment

All around the country, many Americans celebrate Labor Day at parades and parties. It’s a day to have fun, to honor workers — and also to think about where you want to go in your career.

The holiday is an ideal time to make career resolutions, because it’s considered the beginning of the “new work year,” according to the head of the outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas. CEO John A. Challenger suggests taking an active approach, whether you’re trying to get work or keep your existing job. Be prepared, because this approach may take you beyond your “comfort zone,” he writes.

The key is to set specific goals and reasonable deadlines for achieving them. Also, the way you frame your goals is important. Focus on what you can control, Challenger emphasizes. Ultimately, the decision to hire you or to keep you on the payroll rests with an employer. However, there are steps you can take to try to make those things happen.

For example, instead of making it your goal to land a new job, focus on the smaller steps you can take to try to get work. For job seekers, the goals could include joining a professional group, or finding other ways to meet 10 new people in your field.

Or, for instance, if you’re employed and trying to get a promotion, your goals could be to update your supervisor regularly on your accomplishments, and to join a workplace committee.

Whatever you do, don’t give up, Challenger says. Despite the weak pace of the recovery, finding a job or staying employed shouldn’t be considered lost causes. He also notes that there has been an encouraging trend over the past couple years: employers have been announcing fewer layoffs.

So while overall economic conditions are still difficult, there is some hopeful news. Keep that in mind as you pursue your career goals. Focus on the steps you can control. Your attitude, above all else, is the key to success.

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One Comments to “Kick Off ‘New Work Year’ with Career Resolutions”
  1. joela says:

    Huh. Interesting. Didn’t consider Labor Day a starting point for job hunting. That explains a lot.

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