It’s been a truly random year, to say the least. If you have made it this far with health and happiness intact, then congratulations.
Also, if you are like most people we’ve interacted with, then welcome to what we call the state of ‘induced existential flux’. Triggered by the widespread re-assessment of life priorities during this period of uncertainty & chaos, the most tangible outcome of this flux has been ‘The Great Resignation’, on which much has been written and said. But even when the results have not been as drastic, it is safe to say that most of us have been nudged to reflect on our professional & personal lives thus far, and what we truly want from the future.
Assuming you haven’t yet decided to leave it all behind & become a monk in the hills, here are 5 ideas on how each one of us can rock our careers in 2022!
- Pick up some new skills: Perhaps the most direct way to change the status quo in your career is to acquire new skills. Careers & business needs are evolving and so are learning avenues, with more opportunities available than ever before, giving you control over your growth as a professional. You can choose to delve deeper into your existing area of specialization, develop new-age skills, or do something in between – dive in with the confidence that organizations today are increasingly supportive of such developmental efforts.
- Learn to say No: As important as what we open ourselves to in the new year, is what we choose to decline & exclude. This is the time to push back on work practices, colleagues, habits, and everything else that have been holding you back – value your time, well-being and growth, and make concerted efforts to cut out hindering factors. That could mean giving unvarnished feedback to your team/ colleagues/ Manager; standing up against established ways of working if that’s the only reason they exist; brushing up your CV if you feel your current organization does not align with your career objectives; among countless other actions that could take you one step closer to your destination.
- Take a chance: Marrying YOLO with your career – this is the time to stop being shy and take that chance – push for that cross-functional move you always wanted, pitch for that dream job, ask for a raise, or even confront long-standing issues at the workplace. As Wayne Gretzky said, “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take”. If there is one good thing we can take from this time, it is to start taking more chances. The steady-state needs a shake-up, and it needs to start with you.
- Use genuine connections to open up possibilities: We’ve all had our fair share of cringe-worthy card exchanges and awkward, thinly veiled sales pitches. While all of this may have given ‘networking’ a bad rep, we want to highlight the importance of genuine connection at a time of increased distancing & isolation. In 2022, step out of your comfort zone, and make connections with people around you, reach out to those who can support your journey forward, and also those who could benefit from your guidance. Done right, there are few stronger enablers of professional success than a vibrant network.
- Your life is your career: Today, more than ever before, it is important to think of life and aspirations with an integrative approach. Look beyond just your work – do you have a real hobby outside of work & domestic responsibilities? Is there anything that you really feel passionate about – have you been able to give any time to that? Do your personal relationships need more time & focus? For real well-being, both personally and professionally, it is important to remember that at the end of the day, your life is your career.
Go ahead and be the best version of yourself in 2022!