When it comes to Christmas, the general theme is to focus on family and loved ones. Given the ease of tradition kicking in with the mindset of festivities over Christmas, it’s easy to cast your career and aspirations aside this time of year.
Although recruitment and networking activities do dampen a little until the New Year, Christmas actually provides unique opportunities that can boost your careers while avoiding some pitfalls.
Here is the ultimate guide to making the most of your festive catch ups to help with professional development.
Connecting during Christmas
Offering a great excuse to meet up with those you’d like to speak with, a meeting could be as simple as reconnecting with an old classmate who ended up in a high networking environment or spending more time with someone in a department you have your eyes set on joining. With Christmas spirit in the air, people generally are more open to accepting a drinks invitation during the Christmas season, which gives you the best opportunity to connect and extend your network.
The Albatross Bay Resort in Weipa creates the perfect ambience for a casual work catch-up. Offering different settings such as the Boathouse Beer Garden with waterfront views to set the scene, and a more professional sit down space at the Deck Restaurant, having the option to make a joint decision to choose your social setting will help concrete your relationship with the person you’re catching up with.
Sending out Christmas cards
Touching base with your network can be as simple as sending out Christmas cards to them as well as your friends and family.
Whether you plan on sending some season’s greetings through traditional post or even through a simple e-card, Christmas is a great way to check with your network, be it ex-bosses, workmates, customers, and suppliers to ensure that you are remembered for any opportunities that may arise in future.
Keep your message short, succinct, and friendly with a light hearted tone, which does mean avoiding attaching a CV to your card. Including a link to your website or LinkedIn page can be a smart way to encourage a connect, and will help jog the recipient’s memory about who you are, what you do, and how they can contact you.
Say No to Being a Scrooge
Work relationships can be trying and not all are filled with goodwill. Given that it is the season of giving, take on this opportunity to be jolly and set aside any underlying feelings of negativity by sending colleagues Christmas cards or being their Secret Santa. Embracing the festivities can help build bridges and launch the new year to a more positive start.
Make the most of the office party
If there’s an office party happening, make the effort to secure connections and get your name known among the people in positions. As much as having a party can be fun, it’s still a work setting which means avoiding any negative faux pas that will put a ding on your reputation and career prospects.
Be polite, engaging, and inclusive with vibes of confidence that show your best personality to the higher ups leaving them with a name to be remembered.
The giving season
Get involved with your community by feeding the homeless or fundraising some Christmas presents for underprivileged kids, whatever the cause you choose, voluntary social work has a huge impact on your career. From broadening your skill set to boosting your CV and expanding your contact network, you have much to gain from a professional standpoint on top of helping those in need.
Take a step back and reflect
With all the hustle and bustle toning down from the busy year, you can take some quiet time to reflect on your current work situation. Reflect on aspirations and progression, as well as the opportunities that lie ahead. What was good about 2021 and what do you want to change about it? What are your career priorities and obstacles? Identifying these points can help you gain a clearer picture about your objectives and what next steps you should take to achieving them. You could also read career coaching books and articles to gain useful insight and advice to help point you in the right direction.
New Year, maybe New Career?
Take this time to create a career action plan by updating your CV, LinkedIn profile, and identifying the gaps in your skill set whilst looking for ways to address them. Remember, 2022 offers a fresh start, giving you the chance to nail your New Year’s Resolution for a successful career.