Last year our focus was resolutions for employers. Simply put, 2006 is shaping up to be the “Year of the Candidate”. Hiring for all levels of employees from entry level to senior executive has risen across the board. While certain industries remain hotter than others, the New Year brings an excellent opportunity to follow these career resolutions:
1. Critically Evaluate Your Current Position: We consistently counsel candidates that every job has a “life cycle”. In other words, there is only so much career potential available in any given job. Once that potential has been fulfilled, it’s time to move upward and onward. Most candidates however, have difficulty realizing when they have reached the end of this life cycle. Some questions to ask yourself: Is the path for promotion clear in my current position? Does my current supervisor/senior report serve as a mentor or as a career obstacle? Has my compensation peaked based upon internal constraints and against external competitive market salaries? Am I growing in my current role?
2. Understand Your Market Value: A common complaint among job seekers is that they are underpaid. But are you really? Do you know your current market value? What is the source of your information? Often candidates are simply making this assertion as a fallback to their overall unhappiness in their current position. As part of your overall evaluation process, be certain to verify the compensation data available to you. Specific factors you should include in your market value assessment are: Your current compensation versus peers in your organization. Your current compensation versus readily available market data for your industry, specific position, and company size. Projected compensation level you could be at in a future role?
3. Get Prepared & Be Prepared: No matter how secure your current job is, it is important to keep your resume updated. By keeping this material current, you help yourself by being prepared to pursue future opportunities that may come your way. Additionally, create a target list of people that would be willing to serve as references in the hiring process. No need to call them immediately; just be certain you are aware of who you can call in the event you choose to. Do not forget about networking as well. The New Year is an excellent time to touch base with network contacts; call them and wish them a Happy and Prosperous New Year. At the very least, you name will stay on their radar. Finally, commit yourself to continue building an improved network of business contacts. Resolve to join three new business or career related groups in the next year. You can never have too many contacts in your network.
If hiring trends from the third and fourth quarter are any indication, 2006 promises to be an excellent year to advance your career. Follow through with these New Year career resolutions and make 2006 your year.
Executive recruiter William Werksman is a frequent columnist to job boards including http://www.NevadaJobBoard.com addressing both the candidate's and employer's perspective. Werksman's expertise has been featured in business magazines, national newspapers and television news segments. His firm, Resource Partners, is recognized as the leading source of specialized and executive talent in the Casino and Gaming industry. He manages a staff of recruiters out of his firm's Las Vegas, Nevada headquarters. He may be reached at: Bill@CareerInsider.com