Planning a Better Year

With each start of a new year, many people reflect on their past and make plans for their future. Maybe it's to exercise more, eat better, or even something adventurous like go skydiving or travel overseas. However, it's not just a tool to use for personal development, but also something that can help you plan a better year for your career.

HR headed into an upswing, the time couldn't be better to set some goals for professional growth and success. Get started now with these quick tips!


Plan the Big Picture

The big picture is a view of your year as a whole. It starts with a calendar. Go through your upcoming year or use last year's planner to schedule deadlines, conferences and other important events. Set reminder notifications for an appropriate time in advance to prompt you to book flights, renew a certification or file a return. If you're in charge of payroll too, schedule that automation into your calendar and adjust for holiday weeks when banks might not be open.


Organize the Daily Details

Set 10 minutes aside each morning to plan your day. Review your calendar, to-dos for the day, and anything leftover from the day before. While you're already looking at your agenda, glance ahead at something you can get a jump start on, if you find free-time. This practice could save your future self in case of something comes up.

Make sure you give yourself buffer time between meetings in case they run long but try to make meetings to be shorter if possible. Google's new calendar encourages shorter meetings by enabling "Speedy Meetings" in Settings. This schedules 30-minute meetings as 25 minutes, and one-hour meetings at 50 minutes.

Never Stop Learning

One thing that tends to fall by the wayside when things get hectic is our leisure or even technical reading. However both are important, and with the ever-changing world of HR, it is essential more than ever to stay up-to-date on the industry. Between politics, people and the changing workplace, keeping a finger on the pulse will work wonders for your career. So schedule time in your day to read a relevant article or research a topic in which you're interested. It's worth the time and will keep you current.

Make an Impact with a Passion

HR can be such a thankless job sometimes; partly because you're often behind closed doors and slightly because people only see you if it's serious. Find an initiative that you're passionate about and is relevant to your career goals and the mission of the company (employee engagement is a great one, and it's the future) and do something about it! It's a win-win.

Work on something you love and the company benefits from it. Plus, you make yourself stand out, create a strong example, and be seen as a leader - something that will also be trending this year!

Find a Mentor

A mentor is not too much for you. It is never too early in your career to find one. Trust me. The time is now to connect with other HR professionals. Whether it's online or in person, you want to associate yourself with other hardworking and experienced professionals in your career. A mentor is someone who speaks your work language and can relate and guide you through the changes in your job.

"Use LinkedIn, or join a local city chamber or professional networking group to connect with like-employed people who can be sounding boards and brainstorming buddies as you develop your profession."

No matter the time of year, there's always an opportunity for improving yourself. When you're thinking about personal development, remember that your career is a big part of who you are. Make sure to include those milestones in your goals for growth. With planning, pursuing a passion, and making a friend in a mentor, this is going to be a big year for human resources, and you're going to be ready!


New Year, New Growth!

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