By Dr. Maria G. Hernandez
Latina Cubicle Confidential™
Feliz Año Nuevo! Happy 2014!
It’s the season for making resolutions and no doubt you have pondered some of the more common goals we set at this time of the year: eat better, budget wisely, sleep more, exercise more.
If these are part of your plans for 2014, take a moment to learn what works when setting goals and building new habits and keep your perspective: “la salud antes que nada” your health trumps everything else!
Without feeling well—physical, mental and spiritual– it’s hard to accomplish much of anything.
If you have not made any career related goals for 2014, I’d like to inspire you to add just a few to your list.
The first and most important goal is about changing your attitude about your career. Latinas have this remarkable ability to under-estimate our worth. We may be satisfied with our current job — it pays the bills, it provides benefits — but we may not see what it is costing our career.
There’s a difference between the job you have today and your career. Take time to determine what you want for the long-term and assess whether your current job is getting you there.
Have you outgrown your job? Is your employer not willing to invest in your professional development? If you are not learning new skills in your current job, it is undermining your future earnings potential.
In the new labor environment, only those who stay competitive can secure the best paying jobs and it’s in your best interest to make sure you place a value on your talents and skills so that you are well positioned for future opportunities.
Another resolution for your consideration is to become active in at least one professional network or association.
Now more than ever — it’s not what you know but who you know that counts in creating the career you want for your life. And let’s take it one step further—it also matters how you interact with the people in your network.
You may have 1,000 people connected to your LinkedIn profile or 10,000 Twitter followers or 3,000 Facebook friends and family—and so how are you connecting and interacting with them? We all may enjoy the casual updates about family or special events that make the rounds on Facebook and Twitter—don’t stop there!
Make some effort to update your business contacts on what you are doing at work or a special project you are leading. Even better — make 2014 the year you connect regularly in person with other professionals for mutual support. That personal connection you make, may just lead you to a new opportunity.
One final resolution for your career in 2014 — Make time for learning something new or polishing up on an existing skill. Even if you just carve out one hour to read an article about your industry or you view this inspiring TED talk video series next week, that investment will pay off.
Want some topics to read about tonight?
Forbes published a great list of the ten most critical job skills employers want to see. The top four skills are: Critical Thinking Skills, Complex Problem Solving, Decision Making and Active Listening.
Put those into your search engine and get started now!
Dr. Maria G. Hernandez has 20 years experience consulting in both the United States and Mexico to senior executives in Fortune 50 companies and facilitated change initiatives for elected officials and their staff. She has worked in academia, business, nonprofits, technology startups, and public agencies. For more information, visit Latina Cubicle Confidential™ on Facebook or on Twitter @SavvyLatinaInfo.