Start fresh and take action to move forward in your profession
I hope everyone has been surviving the first few weeks back in school. While it can be stressful making the switch from a laidback summer to the chaos of work and routines, the transition doesn’t have to be difficult. What’s not to love about the fall: crisp air, cozy cardigans, pumpkin spice lattes, and let’s not forget football season!
Fall is also the perfect opportunity to start fresh and take action in your career.
Here are five things to add to your fall to-do list:
1. Take advantage of conference season
Now is the perfect time to revamp your networking strategy. The fall months are prime time for conferences, so be sure to sign up for events going on in your industry. Making connections and strengthening relationships is key to growing your business and taking your career to the next level.
While networking, the most important thing to keep in mind is finding a way to provide value in every interaction.
“You must be extremely engaged about what others are saying. It’s not about you, but about how well you integrate your voice and perspectives into conversations,”according to an article in Forbes. “What matters most to those who are listening? Your audience will serve to help you connect the dots of opportunity and potentially act as an enabler for you.”
2. Set an end of the year goal
New Year’s doesn’t have to be the only time you set goals for yourself. Come September, most of us are feeling refreshed and recharged, so why not take that energy and put it to good use? Is there a project you’ve been wanting to tackle? Create a plan of action and specific steps you can take to achieve it. Make your professional development a priority.
3. Stay up-to-date on current trends in your industry
If you want to be successful, you have to keep up-to-date with the latest news and business developments. Subscribe to newsletters, participate in online forums, and do your best to be one step ahead of the curve. LinkedIn has a lot of great discussion boards, so start joining the conversation.
When it comes to staying relevant in your field, “Think of it like brushing your teeth: It’s so much easier to do a little each day, week or month than try to catch up and deal with the consequences after you neglect it for years,” Monster reports.
4. Arrange meetings with people more established in your field
Regardless of where you are on the career ladder, you will always be growing and learning. Finding a mentor is essential for career development – one of my career mantras has always been “learn from the leader.” You cannot put a price on real-world experience – meeting someone who has walked the walk is more valuable than any book you can read or class you can take. Look for someone with traits you admire who challenges you to step outside your comfort zone.
5. Maintain a healthy work-life balance
We are a society of driven people. But many of us set standards that aren’t always realistic, and then run ourselves into the ground trying to meet them. So, the question is how can we create a work-life balance that keeps us focused on our goals and priorities?
To achieve this equilibrium, we must practice mindfulness on a daily basis. When we create mindfulness at work we “work smarter not harder.” From a productivity standpoint, when we are mindful of creating work-life balance, the benefits are worth it.