New Year's Resolutions for Young Professionals to Consider


It is natural to set goals when you have a fresh start available like a new year. According to a recent study published in the University of Scranton’s Journal of Clinical Psychology, an estimated 45% of Americans will make New Year’s resolutions when the ball drops at the end of the month. The top ten resolutions include typical ones like weight loss, organization, learning, falling in love and enjoying life. Young professionals should take advantage and make resolutions this year too, in order to improve their personal brands and careers.

Using your smartphone and tablet for good.

Technology allows humans to do things that weren’t possible years ago. Why not use your iPad to learn a new language, manage your time better or read articles and news while you are on the go? Tablets and smart phones are equipped with plenty of apps that allow you to go beyond the common text, call and tweet.

Invest in your personal brand.

It is about time that you create your personal website and portfolio, optimize your Linkedin profile and finally invest in a .com address. If you already have a website, conduct an audit and identify areas where you can improve, commit to writing more on your blog, or redesign the layout and update the copy. Keep your personal brand and online presence as fresh and accurate as possible.

Shift your social media channels to professional use.

In order to have a complete and positive online presence, your social media channels should reflect your professional interests. Make sure your social media profiles include your real name, have a consistent head shot and share content that would be of interest to those in your industry. Begin to monitor what you are posting and keep a balanced personal to professional ratio for information sharing.

Participate in a professional organization.

Being involved in a professional organization related to your career field can be expensive and a task that you procrastinate. By making a concerted effort to pay your membership dues, you can take advantages of special rates and work on growing your professional network through events and online communities. There are many organizations that can benefit young professionals based on industry and/or location.

Read one new career book every three months.

For suggestions, check out Best Career Books for Young Professionals

Take on pro bono work in order to sharpen a skill set.

By providing your services for free, you can build skills that you already have and learn new ones along the way. You are able to enhance your resume and give back to your community at the same time. For example, volunteer with a non-profit in your area that is related to your industry. You can offer to contribute to their newsletter, take pictures at an event, assist with marketing or speak to their members. In addition to making use of your talents, you expand your network and gain professional references.

Start a career journal.
A work-focused journal is one of the most effective tools to assist in growing and succeeding in your career. By jotting down your feelings each day, you are able to begin addressing issues you may not even be aware existed. Daily reflection will assist you in pinpointing errors, miscommunication,  improving your relationships with colleagues, and learning what triggers certain emotions. Check out our career journal guide if you are getting started.