t’s become tradition to set New Year’s resolutions, and for many, these goals involve improving themselves both personally and professionally. That said, studies show that completing a New Year’s resolution is not only rare – they have a whopping 80% failure rate – but most people lose steam by mid to late February.  Well, here at Hollstadt, we want you to achieve all your goals! So, here is your February resolution “pick-me up” to help you cultivate and grow your career in 2020.

Build that network

The best consultants know that relationships and communication are key to long-term success in consulting.  By thoughtfully building your professional network with colleagues, mentors, clients, friends and through associations or groups, you are surrounding yourself with people who can help provide valuable insight and help guide you to advancement in your career.

Make your social channels work for you. If you haven’t already, build your personal brand on LinkedIn by showcasing your skills, passions and contributions. By sharing with others on your social channels, you’ll have a larger network to share your expertise and showcase your value. If you are unsure of where to start, set up a meeting with the team at Hollstadt – we are well-versed on the latest LinkedIn trends and would be happy to help you get started.

Know what skills are in demand

Certain skills will always be important for companies, especially when looking for quality consultants. Throughout our 30 years in business, we know that experience in Project Management, Business Analysis, Quality Assurance, Methodologies (such as Agile), Management Consulting, Software Development and Process Engineering are critical in the business and technical spaces. While these skills are tried and true, you can pair these with others that will be especially valuable in the coming years – experience with Workday, Salesforce, Robotic Process Automation, Cyber Security, Emerging Technology Development to name a few.

In addition to hard skills, we frequently hear that soft skills (communication, critical thinking, teamwork, positivity, etc.) can be just as important as the technical requirements of a role. It’s important to build a well-rounded skillset as it will help you advance throughout your career.

Seek out career planning resources and/or relevant training

Seize the responsibility for your own career advancement! Don’t waste valuable time hoping for the best…understand your goals and take action to reach them. Hollstadt’s Service Delivery team offers career planning and guidance no matter where you are at in your career planning journey. We can help you establish goals that are aligned with your strengths, experience, as well as prepare you for emerging trends and opportunities.

Once your goals are set, seek out the relevant training needed to get you there. Hollstadt offers dozens of live training events each year on both hard and soft skills designed to help you excel while on assignment. In addition, we have several webinars and virtual training offerings available through our online consultant portal and through our partnership with LinkedIn Learning. If you have questions on how to jumpstart your training regimen, contact us!

Step outside your comfort zone

The saying goes, if you do nothing unexpected, nothing unexpected happens. Look for opportunities to try something new and step outside your comfort zone. This can be volunteering to be a contributor on a new project, signing up for training on a skillset you know will add value, or even seeking out a mentor who can help provide insight into your career goals.

By taking that extra leap, you can add to your skillset, get exposure to other people, opportunities and events to set yourself up for success in a new area of expertise.

When working towards those career resolutions, make sure to plan effectively, build relationships and execute your growth strategy with confidence. By implementing these steps, you can significantly impact your growth opportunity in 2020 and challenge yourself to reach the next stage in a successful career which will result in a happier you.