It’s never too late to make a New Year’s resolution. Even if January 1st has passed! So if you’re still wondering what career goals you want to focus on in 2023, you’re never too late to get started.
A year gives you a good amount of time to measure growth, so pick something that you feel you can make measurable progress in by 2024. Whether it’s a development goal or an aspiration for better work-life balance, make sure you’re setting SMART goals that you can measure quantifiably.
Here are eight career goals you might want to set to inspire yourself during 2023.
Career Goals & Professional Goals for 2023
Once you decide which goals to pursue, think about how far along you want to be in your goal by 2024. For example, if you want to start your own business, that’s a long-term career goal. You probably won’t have a mega-corporation by next year.
Every goal measures success in degrees and is made up of many small steps, so set short-term and long-term goals. Figure out how many steps towards that end goal you want to take this year.
Here are eight possible career objectives to set for yourself this year.
1. Earn and Ask for a Raise
With the pandemic looking like it’s not going away any time soon, having extra cash to pad your savings or emergency fund could take away some stress. At the same time, businesses may show more hesitancy in offering raises due to the unpredictable economy, so you’ll need to gather evidence to prove to your project manager you deserve it.
But you know what companies can’t afford to lose right now? Good employees.
With the Great Resignation on the rise, a company cannot risk losing a valuable employee. When people feel that another company will value them more highly, they won’t stick around.
If you prove that you are doing above and beyond in your position, especially if you fulfill tasks outside of your job description, you’ll have a solid campaign in favor of your raise.
If you’re showing up and giving the job your all, your paycheck should reflect that. And if your job won’t give you the raise, find another company that will help you achieve your goal of a higher salary.
2. Start a Small Business
2020 showed employees a lot of companies’ true colors. With the merciless firings, pay cuts, and basic lack of compassion for struggling workers, there was a country-wide wake-up call that a lot of employers genuinely do not care about the people that work for them.
If you want to escape that ruthless and uncompassionate corporate culture, it might be time to start your own business. Owning a small business is one of the most rewarding and emotionally exhausting journeys you can experience, but many will tell you that it’s a risk worth taking.
Even if you struggle on your path to entrepreneurship, you can sleep at night knowing you are doing something you are passionate about and you don’t need to deal with office politics.
3. Go to a Job Interview
2020 may have also helped you decide that your career no longer brings you joy. Or maybe you’ve realized that your current job or company no longer aligns with your set career goals.
If that’s the case, it may be time to start looking for a new job. So break out those networking skills, because it’s time to start interviewing.
Even if you ultimately decide that you’re happy where you are, there’s no harm in doing the interview circuit just to see what’s out there. Seeing different companies, what they offer, and what roles they’re looking to fill, will help you determine if where you currently are is right for you and your professional goals.
Before you put yourself out there, make sure you polish your resume and brush up on some interview tips. Depending on how long you’ve held your current position, the interview game may have changed.
4. Become or Find a Mentor
Few professional relationships are quite as fulfilling as that of a mentor and mentee. As a mentee, having a mentor who holds a position you someday hope to hold can provide invaluable insight that can help you reach your goals.
As a mentor, you feel validated and fulfilled knowing that you can be the person you needed when you were just starting out. And seeing the industry through a newcomer’s eyes can open your own to perspectives you never considered, expanding your own professional development.
If you don’t have a mentor yet, or you feel like you’re ready to take on the role of mentoring others, maybe 2023 is the time to build that relationship. Then, you can both work on your individual goal setting together.
5. Learn One New Skill
It’s so easy to get in the groove of your job and never break out of the mold. You know what you’re good at, and it’s comfortable to do what you know.
But what if there’s a part of your industry that you have a deep passion for, but you don’t know yet because you’ve never explored it?
Graduating from college doesn’t mean you’re done learning. As cliche as it sounds, you should pursue new knowledge your whole life. It’s how we grow.
This practice of learning new things should apply to your professional life as well. Whether you take a class or learn from a professional on SkillShare, carve out time to learn at least one new skill this year.
6. Explore a New Industry
Some people wake up, hit with the realization that they aren’t on the right professional path for them. When this happens, it’s easier to take action steps towards finding a new career that brings you joy.
Sometimes this realization comes more subtly. You dread the end of the weekend because you don’t want to go back to work. But everybody hates Mondays, right? That’s common. Nothing to be concerned about.
You feel so burnt out by the end of the day that you have difficulty expending the energy to do things you enjoy. But isn’t everyone?
Well…no. Some people finish the workday feeling fulfilled and empowered because they love their jobs. Some people actually look forward to the office on Monday because they feel like they do meaningful work.
You don’t have to outright hate your job to make a change. If all you feel is “meh” towards your profession, maybe it’s time to break out of your industry altogether. Make it your job this year to find a new industry that could bring joy back to your workplace.
You owe yourself happiness.
7. Truly Discover Work/Life Balance
If you’ve been super focused on your career and climbing the ladder, or you own your business, chances are you’re not great at work/life balance. You’re probably guilty of starting your day extra early, working through lunch, working late, or working on the weekends. After all, giving your job or your business your all is how you’re going to get ahead in the long-game, right?
While there is nothing wrong with going above and beyond at work, if you do it consistently, you don’t have balance. And not having balance is what not only leads to burnout, but it also causes you to neglect much-needed self-care, miss out on important life moments and memories, and feel so much unneeded stress.
Set a goal for yourself of only working between certain hours, five days a week. And then put your phone on do-not-disturb mode when that time window closes for the day/week. The world isn’t going to end if you don’t immediately handle an issue that comes up. And sure, there are exceptions. But healthy boundaries can be set, and you and your clients, customers, or leadership need to be able to respect those boundaries.
8. Find a Community of Boss Women
This year, make one of your short-term career goals finding a community of businesswomen to learn from and grow with. The easiest way to find a powerhouse group of women to support you along your career journey?
Joining Women’s Business Daily.
Each of these goals, from learning more about how to excel in your industry to finding a mentor to building your personal brand, can begin with WBD. We have the tools you need to excel in your industry and find that group of go-getting women that just get you. So join today and invest in this amazing future you’re looking to build.
Take your career goals to the next level in 2023 with WBD by your side.