As the sun sets on summer 2016, use the upcoming Labor Day weekend as a catalyst to recalibrate you career trajectory.
Why Labor Day? Timing is everything. This weekend marks a transition between seasons and a sense of ‘starting over’ as a new school year begins.
When you arrive @work on Tuesday morning your plans will collide with the competing interests of colleagues returning to work, equally energized and motivated. If you have a plan, and a schedule of activities already on your calendar you will be in a position to maintain the momentum, moving you closer to your ‘dream’.
Start with two questions:
What do I still want to accomplish?
What is one thing I can do move forward?
Your answer to the first question asserts your priorities, and the second sets the first item on your agenda.
When thinking about priorities, consider feedback you have received from managers, colleagues, mentors and friends. What skills need fine tuning? Is there additional expertise you need to acquire to advance in your current position or transition to a new workplace? Who can help you achieve your goals? Is it time for additional training or an advanced degree?
The ‘still want to accomplish’ question hits at the fundamental essence of who you are, who you want to become, and the legacy you want to leave behind. It has a workplace component, but also addresses work/life balance, and your role as a contributing member of your community.
The next step is to schedule a meeting to set your priorities in motion: coffee with a mentor to review your career direction, an information interview to establish a new professional connection, a visit to a local non-profit, or a meeting with an academic advisor to explore educational options.
Your priorities dictate your agenda.
Before the weekend comes to an end, take a few minutes to review your calendar and block out time for ‘summer energy reserves expenditures’. Send at least one email requesting a meeting and try to find time each week to sit down with folks who can expand your career horizons.
Effectively managing your work/life is an ongoing energy expense. It will keep you moving forward, recalibrating as needed.