New Year, New (Professional) Resolutions
This post comes from INK alumna Rachael Genson.
It’s January and you know what that means. A new year brings the desire to create new resolutions – those goals that we strive to incorporate as a regular part of our lives. Oftentimes, I find that people focus their resolutions on their personal lives, failing to realize that making improvements to their professional lives can be equally important. What’s more is that many of the things I would like to resolve to do differently in my work life can be easily transferred to aspects of my personal life.
If you’re interested in trying something different this year, why not strive to incorporate these suggestions into your professional resolution list?
-Increased engagement in social media: The age of social media is upon us (Don’t believe me? Check out Mashable’s list of 2012 Social Media Predictions). These days, there are hundreds of different social media channels available to us – Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, Flickr, Digg – the options are seemingly endless. It’s not enough to just have a Facebook page or a Twitter account anymore. While there is no need to join every channel out there, you do need to be both active and engaging in order to encourage activity among your followers and to ensure you get the most out of your selected sites. This year, vow to join a new social media channel and spend an additional 15-30 minutes every day interacting with your followers/friends/contacts. By making this small change, you can gain followers and your continued engagement will establish you as an influencer in your channel.
-Build out your professional networks: As in most professions, a successful public relations career can be partially attributed to a well-developed and ever expanding pool of connections. Frequently, I find myself getting caught up in my own office, entirely forgetting the vast network of public relations professionals that live in my area. I know networking can be an uncomfortable experience for anyone, but this year, try to step out of your comfort zone and attend one networking event in your area each month (and talk to a stranger). It’s always nice to meet other industry professionals in your area and you never know when one of your connections can prove useful.
-Continue your education: You might have a steady job, but that does not preclude you from further education. As professionals, we should always strive to improve our knowledge and expertise in our own field as well as other areas. Personally, I would like to improve my writing and public speaking skills. Toastmasters International provides great classes throughout the country to help improve one’s public speaking and leadership skills. To find a club in your area, just click here. Another great resource for professional development classes is Star 12 Seminars. I’ve already registered for two skills seminars this year and can’t wait to broaden my skill set.