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Career Bucket List: 9 Things to Try

2017 is underway and many of us have already created resolutions that we’re hoping to achieve in the New Year. Resolutions are stepping stones for creating a new and better you, so why not think longer term and consider what you want to achieve in your career? This is where a career bucket list comes into play.

Throughout your career, you may have surpassed different milestones. Perhaps it was completing an internship, receiving your first promotion or attending a work conference. However, as you advance in your professional development, it’s important to set goals and map out plans to achieve them. To hold yourself accountable, why not create a career bucket list?

A career bucket list is a list of things you would like to achieve or try before the end of your career. It can motivate you and help keep you focused on what you do in your work life.
This year, I encourage you to think about what you have already accomplished in your career and what’s left to pursue. Below are some ideas to get you started:

    1. Become a mentor
      Chances are, you have probably received good advice from people more experienced than you. Now why wouldn’t you want to provide the same assistance and guidance to the next generation? Not only does mentoring someone help advance your leadership and teaching skills, but it also inspires you to push yourself in your profession.
    2. Learn a new language
      In many cases, you could become a more valuable asset to your company once you pick up a new language. Imagine the advantages you’d gain by being able to speak French to your customers in France?
    3. Learn a new skill
      Like learning a new language, learning a new skill will also make you a more valuable employee. Highly specialized skills come in handy and can set you apart from others in your field with less depth of knowledge. Learning a skill in a new area could also open up a new career path that you never would have pursued otherwise.
    4. Give a presentation at a conference or seminar
      Being a skilled presenter is a great talent to have. If you’re not good at public speaking, study tendencies and skills of TED talk presenters and practice, practice, practice! Strive to become a presenter at an event where you can showcase your expertise and consider a course like Toastmasters if you’re really struggling.
    5. Earn certifications in digital marketing
      This is an exciting and affordable opportunity to not only enhance your resume but also your skill set. Try boosting your expertise by taking digital marketing classes in Adwords, Facebook, Google Analytics, Hootsuite, Photoshop and YouTube, to name a few.
    6. Run a business
      Yes, you have been an employee, but is now your time to lead a business? Take advantage of an opportunity when it arises to be the one on top, and help it prosper and grow. Entrepreneurship shouldn’t be entered lightly but even freelancing can give you a sense of freedom.
    7. Start a volunteer program at your company
      A volunteer program is a great way for a company to show its employees and community it cares. Try to find a charity that aligns in some way with your business and its role in your community to get employees excited about the new program.
    8. Retire early
      Everyone has a time frame as to when they want to retire. Make sure you’re investing in your future now and start saving for your retirement. If your company provides a 401(k) match program, don’t skip it. You will thank yourself later when it’s time to retire.
    9. Be named ‘Employee of the Month’ or earn a similar recognition
      To be the ‘Employee of the Month,’ you must earn it. Hard work, determination, being a team player, exceeding goals, etc. could all be components of receiving this award or a similar accolade. Meet with your manager to ensure you understand expectations, job requirements and key metrics so you’re able to set goals and succeed.

Now it’s time for you to create your career bucket list – whether you plan on using the 10 items above or tailoring it to your own needs. The sooner you start checking items off the list, the sooner you can map your future success.