The year’s coming to a close. Now’s the time to capitalize on a fresh new start, reflecting on the year rapidly spinning out behind us, looking to the horizon of the new one, and examining where to make changes and how to set improvements in place. Below are some ideas to get you started thinking about how to be the master of your destiny in the year ahead.
- Goal Setting
Identify what you’d like to accomplish in the coming year. Place emphasis on your personal growth and professional development. They’re both important. Zero in on where you’d like to be a year from now and what you want to have accomplished. Then determine what exactly you’ll need to make all of that a reality.
- Take a Tip—or Two—From the Top
Personal growth and development are part and parcel of career development. By shadowing a high-performing colleague and/or picking the brain of a senior leader, you’ll gain invaluable insights into how to get ahead. Remember to be open to coaching, constructive criticism and targeted feedback.
- Just Say No to the Status Quo
Your comfort zone is a breeding ground for inaction, and inaction has been the death of many a deal. Challenge yourself next year by embracing persistency and asking tough questions. Use data to build a sense of urgency and to make a compelling case with your customers around the ways your solutions will work to overcome their challenges now, not at some unspecified point down the road.
- Be Proactive
You won’t make great strides this coming year by waiting for things to happen. Rise above the crowd, be proactive and become a thought leader for your customers. Just a few short years ago it was fine to occupy a role that was less hands on, but today’s customers are more engaged and proactive when it comes to the buying cycle—most will reach out to you after they’ve done their research. They’re going to be making more-informed choices, so you’ll need to be ready to step up your game and promote yourself to trusted advisor. And true to the trusted advisor role, you’ll need to be able to diagnose customer challenges and be prepared to make informed recommendations for meeting—and even exceeding—their needs.
So, have a Happy Holiday and enter the coming year prepared to take yourself to that next level in your life and career. The view from there is probably pretty great, both for looking forward and looking back.