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  • Lori A. Jazvac, MRW

Top 5 Tips to Boost Your Career in 2018

If you’re like most professionals, you have returned to work with a renewed zest and inspiration, looking forward to adopt your regular work routine.

On the other hand, you may be even feeling overwhelmed.

It's the New Year — 2018 — the pressure is on to start fresh, carve out a more meaningful direction, and fulfill long-standing goals. Changes may be looming on the horizon, or may have already occurred last year that call for some serious career reflection and decision-making.

Yet, some changes may be outside your control ...

... do budget forecast goals, organizational turnover, new management, industry competition, restructuring, tech innovations, globalization, and others ring a bell?

Truly, you cannot always control "change" itself, but only your attitude towards how you intend to handle it. You may be second-guessing yourself and your abilities. This is not the time to question your value, but an opportune time to truly move ahead.

This year, instead of adopting an attitude of "letting the chips fall where they may," make each day count and live more purposefully.

Here are the top 5 strategies that you can proactively take to boost your career:

1.) Evaluate your progress in detail.

Reflect upon and assess your progress during the past year. Applaud yourself for achieving some terrific milestones within impeccable timing. Write them down.

--> What were some of your milestones and success strategies applied in 2017?

--> Take a scorecard of your performance and commit to doing just a bit more this year — you will see how much you can and will achieve!

--> Assess any gaps in performance and where improvement is needed the most.

--> Forecast; what could you improve on? How can you best reach your goals?

--> Evaluate your supports and focus on strategically building your networks with existing and new contacts as well as professional associations.

2.) Set new short-term and long-term goals within realistic timeframes to achieve your career vision and mission.

What gets measured usually gets done quicker. You will likely attain what you set out to do with an empowering attitude, a sense of purpose, and concrete action plan.

If you want to make a needed career change or pursue a promotion, or even relocate to a new city, just do it!

There’s nothing stopping you—except a reluctant mindset. Be flexible and open to unleashing your true potential in 2018. Determination and action, while putting worry and stress on the back burner is the key to reaping the most success this year.

CREATE A NEW VISION BOARD OR VISION/MISSION STATEMENT. Dedicate some time to sparking some new ideas that will make a difference to yourself and your organization. Carve these innovative ideas out on a vision board. What your mind can conceive, you can achieve. This will help you stick to attaining your vision. Spice things up by revamping your daily routine to alleviate boredom and keep the creativity flowing.

2018 is the year to take some risks and carve out a new path when it comes to your career and personal growth!

3.) Assess your unique value proposition and brand marketing collateral.

Redefine what sets you apart and formulate strategies to improve your overall brand. You have developed, even mastered many new skills since last year. This is a great accomplishment, make no mistake. Your skills can be applied to tackle many different opportunities and build your brand.

INVEST IN A COMPLETE BRAND MARKETING PORTFOLIO..with a brand new professionally customized resume and LinkedIn profile to enhance your social media presence. New opportunities arise between the peak of January through February when employers and recruiters are searching for bright, focused, and ambitious talent.

With a new resume and LinkedIn profile, you will feel more confident and be prepared for whatever comes your way—whether it be a promotion, role change, upcoming presentation, or a challenging board or community leadership role.

4.) Take a new course—commit to developing your key marketable skills.

The latest article by Forbes Council suggests that employers’ expectations and requirements regarding skill development change. The most in-demand skills by employers for 2018 will include STEM – Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics. Artificial Intelligence (AI) is transforming many industries and roles.

... So work on improving your skills in data analysis, critical thinking, technical applications, and problem solving. Employers seek employees who are energetic and adaptable—who can think quickly on their feet. Emotional intelligence is another vital skill to hone since it vastly impacts the quality of relationships as well as career growth and success.

5.) Take up a new hobby or rekindle an existing one.

Work-life balance is important, yet it’s hard to achieve for many due to balancing competing priorities. The New Year is a perfect time to reinvest in yourself with an exciting hobby or interest that will both reinvigorate and challenge you. No doubt, you will come back to work feeling more productive and focused to embrace new projects and address last year's gaps.

This year, believe in and articulate your unique value, say "yes" to career opportunities, track your progress, and leverage your expertise, values, and strengths. Consider last year's lessons—not obstacles—but blessings in disguise.

Be kind to yourself—you've made it through some tough hurdles this past year. It's time to acknowledge your successes and mishaps, and simply own all of it.

Take your career to the next level. For more information, consult Lori Jazvac, Master Resume Writer/Career Consultant with Creative Horizons Communications.

Lori Jazvac is an award-winning, multi-certified Master Resume Writer, Career Transition Coach, and Career Consultant providing strategic solutions to enhance the career success of a wide range of jobseekers, both locally and abroad. She helps prepare and position professionals for their next career milestone using a creative, holistic approach.

Think creatively and visualize a new career horizon...

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