By: Malarie Barineau
As the New Year approaches one question comes to mind – have you made your New Year’s Resolution(s) yet? If not, you still have a few more days to go.
Most people make one or more personal New Year’s Resolutions but why not make professional New Year’s Resolutions too. Here are two of the most common professional New Year’s Resolutions for the upcoming year:
Public Speaking: I don’t know about you but I struggle with this. The thought of speaking in front of a group makes me sick to my stomach. To help with this issue, I have found multiple resources in the Tallahassee area that can help with public speaking from classes at FSU or TCC to joining the Toastmaster’s Club. (https://www.toastmasters.org/Membership/Club-Meeting-Roles/Toastmaster) To find organizations in your area, try searching schools near you, the main Toastmaster website listed above, or the Chamber of Commerce in your area, as well as your state society of assocation executives..
Networking: Networking is another common New Year’s Resolution which goes hand and hand with public speaking. Networking is interacting with other people to exchange information and develop contacts. Networking involves small talk which most struggle with. Small talk is a polite conversation about less serious or noncontroversial matters. Starting questions would be how are you? What do you do? How is work going?. If you’re new to the business world and want to start learning skills to network it may be a good idea to check out your Chamber of Commerce, Network of Young Professionals, Junior League or look into different association groups around you. I know the Junior League of Tallahassee and TSAE/FSAE has helped me a lot with this. It’s all about stepping out of your comfort zone and getting to know other individuals in your area.
Now that I have shared two New Year’s Resolutions for the upcoming year here are a few recommendations on how you can plan to follow through with them:
Make it visible. You want to make your goal visible so you can see it every day. I’m not talking about adding it to your “To Do List” or on your outlook calendar that you dismiss or snooze reminders when you aren’t ready yet. You could make a sign or a sticky note for your computer so you see it every day at the office. If you don’t have something visible you may forget or put it on the back burner. You don’t want to forget your goal so make it bright and bold.
Motivation. You need to have confidence in yourself. No one can push you the way you can. Yes, people can say certain things to start the motivation but in the end it’s your motivation that’s going to persevere. Set limits that are achievable and your inspiration to hit that goal will be easier.
Make a schedule or set a date. It can be difficult to get into a routine but once you start it will turn into a habit which will then turn into a life style/ work style change. Try setting monthly or quarterly benchmarks to see where you are. If you are still working towards your goal, extend the deadline as you see fit.
Tell Your Co-workers. Once you have a New Year’s Resolution, make sure to tell your co-workers or cubicle buddies. You never know if they may be interested in the same goals you are. So instead of going to Toastmasters alone, you may have a few co-workers that want to achieve the same changes. They can help hold you accountable.
No matter what your New Year’s Resolution is, it’s good to remember you are doing this for YOU personally and professionally. You have a goal and you are going to obtain it. If you have any tips or techniques that helped you achieve a previous professional resolution or an idea of how you are going to follow through this New Year, I would love to hear them. I hope 2017 is a great one!