Easy resolutions for a more productive 2011

Whether you are joining the multitudes setting resolutions for getting in shape, changing jobs, or running a marathon, there are a few professional resolutions you may also want to consider. Particularly in this week before students return, spend some time getting yourself and your office ready for a great year.

1.  Clear the clutter

  • Begin by clearing off the clutter on top of your desk, your file cabinet, or table in your office (hint: give yourself a time limit!). Then, simplify your filing system by throwing out all the outdated paperwork that you won’t need in 2011. Review the remaining paperwork and determine how much of it can be scanned or transferred to a disc and stored in your computer. Then, buy a new calendar (bonus: they’re all on sale now) and start putting in important dates for 2011. While you’re at it, don’t forget to update your computer calendar.

2.  Know where you want to go.

  • In order to create goals for yourself, you’ll want to review your 2010 successes. For example, if you helped 50 students find internships, you could challenge yourself to help 60 students find internships in 2011. If you contacted 35 prospective internships sites in 2010, set the number at 50 for 2011.

3.  Make time to develop yourself.

  • Your own professional development is important, too. Evaluate the workshops and conferences you went to last year: were they worth not just your money, but particularly your time? Set your professional development schedule for 2011 now so that you make sure you don’t get to August without having done anything.

4.  Networking isn’t just for students.

  • Follow the advice that you give your students and expand your networking list. Set goals for meeting new people each month, on campus, in your community, through your professional associations, or even through personal circles. Be intentional about meeting 3 new people a month—and put it on your calendar so you set aside time for it!

5.  Create a new view.

  • Create a more stimulating work environment for yourself by reorganizing your office and your desk. Look for a more comfortable desk chair or add an extra chair for students. Switch up the art for your walls or change your desk décor, adding updated photos or a decorative item from a recent trip. Even repositioning your desk for a change of view can be refreshing. Bring in a new candy dish or coffee or tea mug for a nice personal touch.

    Here’s to a great 2011!

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