Young Money: It’s a new year, and it’s time to quit messing around
blog by Caitlin Campbell McNulty • January 03, 2013 @ 9:25am
Whether you spent the remaining days of 2012 in a holiday-induced food coma, or as one of the lone workers in a ghost town of an office, it’s time to start the new year right with a clean professional slate. Unlike school, where winter break is just a vacation, a new year gives (young) professionals the opportunity to turn over a new leaf and make little—or sometimes big—changes to the way they work.
The first step to a work-habit revamp is to take a hard, non-defensive look at your performance review from the end of the year. Objectively consider the feedback you received and create a plan for adjusting your work habits based on those comments. Talk with your manager about why their comments were important enough for them to be included and think of ways to improve upon them.
Now, over the next week, jot down notes every time you switch projects or tasks. Make sure to capture what time you moved to a new project and what exactly you were working on. After a couple of days of this, review how you’ve been spending your time. Notice any patterns emerging? Are you moving back and forth between a few projects multiple times a day? Email eating up your entire morning? Look for ways to organize your time better based on the things you’re already doing.
Didn’t have a review, or have other stuff you’ve been meaning to work on but never seem to get around to? Want to make a career change, go back to school or start your own business? Do it this year. I’m sorry to say, but you’re not getting any younger. Do what you’ve always wanted to now, before the pressures of growing older and wiser make it harder and harder for you to make a big life transformation.
Make 2013 the year to get your professional life in order. Streamline your flow so you’re working smarter, not harder. Find the balance you’ve been looking for between your work and personal life. Don’t let fear of the unknown hold you back in 2013. Grab the bull by the horns and take charge of your professional life this year.