I’ve decided that I’m not a big fan of New Year’s Resolutions. By their very definition, they seem to imply grand sweeping changes that we’re going to make, starting on January 1st of each year.
There’s nothing wrong with setting goals for yourself, as long as you put in a little work and set up a framework that will help you actually achieve them. But that’s the difference between many people’s resolutions and good, solid goals. Often times resolutions are either made as absolutes – “I’m going on a diet,” “I’m going to stop smoking,” – or they are so vague that there’s no accountability – “I’m going to lose weight,” “I’m going to spend my money smarter,” “I’m going to work out more.” Either way, they set the resolution maker up for failure by lack of a specific goal and actionable steps to get there. Perhaps that’s the reason that a large proportion of New Year’s Resolutions are broken or long-forgotten by the end of January. And with those broken resolutions, no real change is made.
However, I’ve noticed that this year, at least among many of the people I know, a shift away from resolutions. I’ve noticed more mentions of goal setting and/or philosophical and attitudinal changes. People committing to taking small steps towards improving their lives, or shifting their perspectives slightly to bring more positivity into their lives. My own approach, as declared on New Year’s Day, is “No resolutions, just goals, determination, and the right mindset.” I have changes I want to make in my life, but instead of making grand, sweeping, vague resolutions, I’ve decided I’m starting with my outlook and attitude at a guiding force, and then taking very specific steps towards making those changes.
But even beyond our personal lives, this approach can also benefit us in our professional lives as well. As human resource and business professionals, we have an opportunity to apply attitudinal shifts and start looking at our profession from a different angle. I wrote about this at the beginning of 2014, and I think it’s still very relevant a year later. Though I did call them resolutions at the time, in reality what I proposed was a mindset change with goals and steps to take to back it up. I know I made some progress in 2014, but there’s still work to be done and more progress to be made. As a profession, there are many great things being accomplished and ideas being generated by talented people, but there’s still work to be done.
So I ask you….how can you change your mindset in 2015? What are the steps you can take towards making changes in an actionable, goal-oriented way? How can you help make our profession better this year?
About the Author: Jennifer Payne, SPHR has over 16 years of HR experience in employee relations, talent acquisition, and learning & development, and currently works in talent acquisition and development in the retail grocery industry. She is one of the co-founders of Women of HR, and is currently the Editor of the site. You can connect with her on Twitter as @JennyJensHR and on LinkedIn.