New Year, New You – How to Set Proper Goals This Year

January 1st, 2020

With 2020 now upon us, have you crafted a new set of professional goals for the New Year? Of course, your manager probably worked with you on a few short-term targets related to your performance at work. Still, you need to go beyond this effort to identify a few personal objectives for your career growth.

If you aren’t sure about the best practices for setting your own professional goals, here are a few tips to help you get started. Additionally, if goal-setting is an important part of your employer’s managerial process, ask your boss for some ideas.

Tips to Help you Set Professional Goals

Make Sure Your Career Goals are “SMART”

A good goal needs to be achievable while providing the means to measure your progress towards reaching it. Ultimately, the SMART acronym remains a great pattern to follow when creating your own goals. SMART stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-Bound.

Try to follow all five criteria for your own goals. For example, setting a goal to learn synthesizer programming in 2020 is specific, measurable, attainable, and time-bound, but it’s likely not relevant to your IT career. Consider having your manager or a professional mentor review your goals to ensure they are all “SMART.”

Craft a Mixture of Short-Term and Long-Term Goals

Creating a mix of short-term and long-term goals is a smart approach for your career growth. While some of the goals – especially those in the shorter term – might be closely related to your current job, others need to be focused on your career growth. A mix of goals helps ensure all aspects of your technology career are covered moving forward.

Regularly Review The Progress Towards Achieving Your Goals

Spending the time to make a set of goals gets wasted if you don’t regularly track your progress. Try to do so at least once each month. Use the first day of the month for this task to help you remember. Since you hopefully set measurable goals when following the SMART acronym, this tracking process should be relatively straightforward.

Prioritize Your Goals

Of course, your professional goals aren’t all equal in their priority. For example, if you want to apply for open cybersecurity positions but aren’t experienced, earning a certification in this discipline needs to rank near the top of your goals. This is closely followed by gaining some experience, perhaps on a volunteer basis with a non-profit in your area.

If you need advice on plotting your IT career path, speak with the insightful recruiters at Synerfac. As one of the top technical staffing agencies in the country, we know the companies looking for great candidates. Connect with us soon!

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