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How to Set SMART Goals for Your Career in 2021

While setting career goals isn’t the only way your career will advance, it’s the only deliberate way to move things along in the direction you intended. But not any goals will do. Making your goals SMART is the best way to set achievable and realistic career goals for the new year. 

What are SMART Goals? 

Almost any interviewer will ask you where you see yourself down the career path. Establishing your professional objectives now, in the form of SMART goals, will help you be better prepared for the next interview. Setting, tracking, and achieving goals will help you show employers your value—and may even help you land a job. Start with SMART goals. SMART stands for:

  • Specific 
  • Measurable 
  • Achievable 
  • Relevant 
  • Time-based

Many times, we set personal or professional goals that are vague. How many times have you set the goals “I’ll eat healthier next year,” or “I’ll lose weight in the New Year?” When your goal is not specific, measurable, or based on a specific measure of time, it’s less achievable and relevant than it should be. Here are some tips for better SMART goals for your career next year.

How to Set Your SMART Goals?

A specific goal is one that is clear and detailed. Instead of saying, I want to earn extra money in overtime next year, set the goal that you want to earn X-dollar amount within the first three months of the year. Instead of saying you want to get a raise next year, set several goals that will set you apart as an employee worthy of a promotion
measurable goal is an incremental achievement. You can track it—and your success. Measurable goals are the dollar amount you want to earn. They are the number of hours you want to put in next month in your side job. Or, they could be that you want to find a new job in January 2021 or have five interviews. 
Achievable goals are realistic goals that you can really meet. Don’t set a goal that, even if you work hard, you can’t achieve. That will only discourage you. If you have one big goal for next year, try breaking it up into smaller, more achievable goals. If you hit all of those milestones, you’ll be motivated to keep going toward the big goal.  
Relevant goals are ones that are relevant to your career path. For example, don’t set a goal that you want to become a great writer unless it’s a valid career goal relevant to your job. Don’t set the goal that you want to be an HR manager at your company when you’re a forklift driver with no experience. Instead, set a goal that you’ll take a class on HR fundamentals first quarter next year—which is the first step you’ll need to move into that field
Time-based goals are the ones that hold you accountable. If you’re setting a goal, when are you going to achieve it? 

We Can Help You Achieve Your Goals

SMART goals are the best way to keep your career moving forward. If your goal is to find a new job next month, your first SMART goal should be to contact Lingo Staffing. Our job is to help you meet your career goals. Our service is free to job candidates and we can help you find meaningful work in the New Year. 


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