For many, 2013 turned out to be a pretty rough year. The sluggish economy put off well-deserved promotions. Raises were miniscule, if any. Bonuses were virtually non-existent. And some people were kindly “outplaced.” The new year is just around the corner, and after you get through the shopping and the New Year’s resolutions, you’ll find yourself wondering, what can I do to make 2014 a better year? How can I re-launch my career? Some initial steps to help get you there:
Pump up your CV
Take a long hard look at your tired old CV. Pump it up with all the milestones you achieved and any new skills you acquired. Make sure to quantify how your milestones and skills improved the company’s bottom line or overall efficiency. Plug in any awards and certifications you received. While you’re at it, jettison anything over ten years old. You’re only as good as your most recent successes. And technology is changing too fast to include anything past a decade. Check out this Resume Tune-up video.
Pump up your interviewing skills ?
You never know when opportunity knocks in the form of a tip or lead to another, better job. Practice answering the tough interview questions: Why should I hire you? Tell me about yourself? What’s your biggest weakness? Do this in front of a mirror to check your body language, and in front of colleagues to see if they believe you. In How To Interview Like A Pro: Forty-Three Rules For Getting Your Next Job, former HR director JD Mary Greenwood advises job seekers to always be in “interview mode” and to continually polish and practice your elevator pitch.
Pump up your network
There’s no time like the happy holidays to do some serious networking. Chances are you’ll be attending lots of social functions, parties and get-togethers with colleagues. Use the relaxed, jovial atmosphere to learn about any opportunities coming up in 2014. After a few drinks, people can become awfully candid about what’s going on in their company, who’s looking for people and who to talk to about it. The key here is to stay as sober as possible during these functions, to listen more than talk, and to remember the names of people you meet who can help you. This is also the time to re-establish old professional relationships. People you haven’t seen for a while, people who were promoted or started their own companies. You could be offered a job. Stranger things have happened. Check out this How to Network at Holiday Parties video for some added tips.
Pump up yourself
If this last year was a downer for your career, you need to pump yourself up to face the new year. When you sit down to pump up your resume, review your accomplishments and awards. Remind yourself that you earned everything you’ve achieved and that you deserve more than what last year handed you. Finally, don’t make too many New Year’s resolutions or promises that are impossible to keep.
Want to re-launch your career in 2014? Start now by pumping up for the challenges ahead.
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