5 New Year’s resolutions to improve your career

Every year I have one resolution that I keep. It has to do with career, not calories. Every year I do something career-related that is worth putting on my resume.

So, that is my first resolution for the new year: I will do something worthy of the top of my resume. It is more important than ever to pay constant attention to career growth because new jobs are being created all the time and new skills get people hired. We will talk a lot about that in this column in the new year.

Here are some other resolutions to consider. Steal some (unless you have already resolved to stop stealing). A lot of these have to do with journalism and technology, so good places to watch for ideas are Mashable, ReadWriteWeb, GigaOM and Knowledgewebb.

  • I will learn and use one new piece of software in 2011. Taking a seminar in something doesn’t count. You have to use it to produce a piece of work you can show. I have to choose between something that will extend my current career trajectory or something that will add a new dimension.
  • I will make greater use of one of the technologies I learned in some previous year. (I am thinking about my underutilized RSS feed or Twitter.)
  • I will buy and use one piece of new equipment in 2011. (I am thinking about an iPad or video gear.)
  • For my network, I make two resolutions: I will reach out to some of the valued people I neglected in 2010 and I will add about half a dozen strategically selected people who work in areas that I normally wouldn’t get to.
  • I will spend more time laughing and playing, and less time worrying and working.

Now if there is just something I could do about the calories.

Career questions? E-mail Joe for an answer.

Coming Tuesday: Chat with Doris Truong of The Washington Post, the new president of the Asian American Journalists Association, on how journalism organizations can help with careers.

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