“My future depends mostly upon myself.” – Paul Robeson
As we again start thinking about dusting off the plastic tree and try to remember if we even sent last year’s Christmas cards, it’s a great time to reflect on the year that was and the year that will be. This reflection is a springboard for considering our professional goals, strengths to build on and areas to develop. Yes, it is only October, however why wait until November or even December?
In the lead up to the year-end, we are usually so frantic finishing up work projects and planning family gatherings, that we often don’t feel we have time to breathe, let alone think about our professional goals and development. We might do a last-minute rush through of our end-year review documents, but do we really give our achievements and future plans the time they deserve?
Yes, it’s a busy time of year and yes you are just waiting for the Christmas break and will worry about it all next year… However, now is probably the best time to consider this often neglected part of our working lives. It is a time to reflect on achievements from the current year, set goals for the next year and plan how to make the most of future opportunities.
And really, it’s as simple as starting with these three questions:
- What did I love most about my job this year?
- Which of my achievements made the biggest difference (to me, my company, my customers)?
- What do I look forward to achieving next year and how can I give myself the best chance of meeting these goals?
Of course, there are other aspects to consider for a full development plan, yet this is a positive starting point that won’t take a lot of time and is often more meaningful and interesting to complete than a ‘tick-the-box’ performance review document (especially one rushed through the night before you meet with your manager)!
Start with these questions, celebrate, and here’s to a successful 2013!
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