Set goals, not resolutions

Happy new year!

A new year brings a fresh start. It’s a great time to commit to making positive changes, both personally and professionally. Many of us set new year’s resolutions, despite the harrowing statistic that 80 per cent of them fail by February.

Want to avoid becoming a statistic and make lasting changes this year? Try setting SMART goals rather than simply making resolutions.

What’s a SMART goal, you ask? SMART goals are:

Specific – Call out the who, what, when, where and why. What exactly do you need, or want, to do?

Measurable – Numbers are everything! Without metrics, you won’t be able to know if I’ve achieved a goal, or how far you need to go to get there.

Attainable – The end result needs to be attainable based on your skills and experience.

Realistic – Be honest about what you can achieve. Consider your workload and available time to tackle the steps you need to take.

Time-bound – Map out the milestones between now and a deadline for achieving the goal.

Find out more about setting SMART goals here.

Goals, career, job, resumeAt the start of 2018, I set a goal to gain recognition of my project management expertise and skills. I applied the SMART model to this goal so that I knew when I achieved it. Success meant obtaining my Project Management Professional (PMP) certification by February, and applying my knowledge to manage a significant project at work from March to August.

This year, I have some new goals on my mind. They are to dedicate more time to Pencil Skirts & Punctuation (as a reader of this blog, I’m sure you’ll appreciate that one!), and to run a 10 km race in June. My next step will be to make these into SMART goals.

Have you set goals for 2019? Take a few moments now to jot down what you’d like to achieve. Follow the SMART model and make it more likely that you’ll get there.

As we move through the year, I’ll continue to check-in to see how I’m progressing toward my goals. Hopefully, I do well enough to share my progress here. Until then, I wish you a healthy, happy 2019!

Image credits: Pixabay.com.

Resume, cover letter, job interview, career, public relations, project management, Pencil Skirts & Punctuation, Laine Jaremey
Quote

New year, new goals, new you

Love ‘em or hate ‘em, for many of us, the start of a new year is the time to take on resolutions to change ourselves for the better.

At the start of a new year, I like to reflect on my goals and check-in on where I’m at with them. A rule of thumb for me is:

“Write down two personal, two business and two health goals for the next 1, 5 and 10 years. Do this four times a year. Goal setting triggers your subconscious computer.” – Lululemon mantra

This mantra works well for me because it reiterates the importance of having different goals across the different facets of life, and over different time ranges. Writing your goals down is also very effective at helping you stick to them. Even billionaire Richard Branson agrees. I also love that it acknowledges that goals can change based on the different circumstances that you face when you check-in on them, even if you haven’t achieved them yet – and that’s okay.

Resume, cover letter, job interview, career, public relations, project management, Pencil Skirts & Punctuation, Laine Jaremey

Although it’s January 3 and I should probably have fleshed out more of my 2018 resolutions, I’ve so far only focused on setting professional goals for the year. To keep me accountable, I’ll share them (in writing!) here. This year, I’m going to step outside of my comfort zone as a communications professional and expand my skill set in other related areas that aren’t categorically “PR”. I’ll be honing my graphic design skills and further advancing my project management knowledge.

What are your 2018 goals? Do you jot your goals down and check on them often to keep yourself on track? Share in the comments.

Image credits: Pixabay.com, Laine Jaremey.

 

Resume, cover letter, job interview, career, public relations, project management, Pencil Skirts and Punctuation, Laine Jaremey
Video

What makes you feel good about your work?

In his TED Talk, behavioural economist Dan Ariely shares what motivates us to go to work every day. Spoiler alert: it’s more than just a pay cheque or bonus! Other things, like ownership of tasks, attaining goals and being challenged, play roles in making work meaningful. These factors continue to be important, even in the knowledge economy.

Check out his Ariely’s TED Talk below.

In my role as a PR and communications professional in the health and life sciences field, I feel fortunate to manage projects from start to finish, giving me a sense of ownership over my work. Further, I find my work meaningful because I play a small part in contributing to the well-being of others, both now and in the future.

What makes your job meaningful to you?

Image credit: Pixabay.com.

Setting SMART goals

goal-1955252_1920I’m in the process of writing my professional goals for the next year at work. So, it’s a good time to focus on some best practices for goal-setting. Rather than just shooting blindly for the stars, I’m going to set SMART goals so I can prove I’ve reached them during my annual review.

What are SMART goals? Each goal is written to include the following five elements. The first letter of each spells out the acronym “SMART.” SMART goals are:

Specific – They identity who, what, when, where and why. What exactly do I need, or want, to do?

Measurable – A SMART goal can be quantified in some way. Without metrics, I won’t be able to know if I’ve achieved a goal, or how far I need to go to get there.

Attainable – The end result needs to be attainable based on my skills and experience.

Realistic – I must be honest with myself about what I can achieve, considering my workload, upcoming projects and available time, and set goals that are realistic given these constraints.

Time-bound – A SMART goal has dates associated with key milestones and a final deadline for when it will be achieved. I’ll need to revisit the timeline periodically to make sure I’m on track, or if a variance from the original dates is required (and justified).

Using the SMART technique also works for personal goals.

Do you have any other tips for goal-setting? Please share in the comments.

Image credit: Pixabay.com.