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Think back to Christmas.

After the presents were opened, the turkey fog was gone, and you were past the egg nog regret, you had a week or so to think about the year ahead.

If you’re like 83% of people (according to a recent HEIDI CONSULTS survey of 4,000 people, junior to senior) you rate your current satisfaction with the state of your career as GOOD.

Remember how you promised yourself this was going to be the year you went from GOOD (one notch above FAIR, and two notches above BAD, but not as bad as VERY BAD) to EXCEEDING EXPECTATIONS?

Remember how you were going to make your career a priority over the demands of your employer?

Well guess what. It’s one month in. What happened?

If you’re like most people, that “just watch me” feeling vanished some time during the first agency all-nighter of 2018, and now, you’ve completely forgotten the excitement you felt about creating the career you want when your mind wandered while watching reruns of It’s a Wonderful Life in your Dad’s La-Z-Boy.

Well I’ll tell you what. I’m going to make it easy for you. I’m going to give you a list of the 10 things you need to DO to guarantee this will be the best year of your career.

Hopefully, the first of many.

#1 Develop a quantifiable goal for yourself against a time line. What’s a quantifiable goal? One you can measure. With a timeline? Yes. A deadline. When you’ll have achieved it by.

#2 Promise yourself you’ll stop breaking promises to yourself.

#3 Start waking up one hour earlier.

#4 Get your portfolio current, then put a monthly appointment into your calendar to review your portfolio and make sure it reflects where your career is and who you are and what you can do as of that moment. Without fail. If you think it’s not important to do this month, please refer back to #2.

#5 Devote time to learning about what’s going on in the industry, and develop an opinion. Opinions make people interesting in interviews, at industry events, in the boardroom, and to the people they come into contact with.

#6 Stop branding yourself the way everyone else does. That’s not branding.

#7 Figure out the answer to this question: Why should I hire you as opposed to everyone else that wants this job? It’s not a trick question. When you do, incorporate it into your branding and make sure it’s the first thing anyone visiting your site learns about you.

#8 Get to know the three busiest recruiters in your field of expertise.

#9 Learn how to tell your story in an interesting, compelling, and memorable way. The kind that makes interviews last two hours.

#10 Hire a career consultant that specializes in creative careers to help you navigate Points #1 – 9 and make sure you get them to happen before December 31.

Know a good one? I do.

~ heidi