spring cleaning for your career

Spring is fast approaching and with it, something that usually pops up on everyone’s list of “things to do”…Spring Cleaning (take your pick of what part of the house it may be) but, it is going to be there! However, spring cleaning does not just have to refer to your house. There are many applicable parts of your life which could use a good cleaning up or refreshing this time of year. For instance, think about your career.

This is not saying that you are doing poorly or that you need to change your job for any given reason. But what if you had to make a move, or find a new job? Are you ready to undertake that task? More importantly, are your job search materials up to the task? There is no time better than the present to make sure that you are ready to meet any career challenges head on, you can do so with a little Career Spring Cleaning.

Clean Up Your Resume:

It may have been a while since you dusted that old resume off and made sure it was up to date. This is important to do as, you never know when you may need it and how quickly. Doing so annually will help to ensure your most recent accomplishments are accurately recorded.

  1. Update your resume to your reflect your current job.
  2. Edit your bullet points to highlight the things that you have accomplished at this position since your last update.
  3. Edit your previous entries so that they best reflect your strengths and accomplishments from those positions.
  4. Relate them to the current position you have in order to show growth where possible.

Clean Up Your Social Media Profiles:

It is easy to let these fall behind, however, they are becoming more and more important in shaping your career. It is not only important to keep your LinkedIn information up to date and informative about what you are doing in your career, but keep your other Social Media profiles in mind as well.

  1. Make your LinkedIn profile current; update your summary to present yourself in a way that not only highlights what you are doing, but incorporates what you are aspiring to do in the future.
  2. Include your relevant career keywords and make sure every section is complete to make your profile more easily found.
  3. Update your security and permissions so you are visible to your desired groups of people. Keep in mind that these change from time to time. Therefore it is important for your career and your personal information security to stay informed of what you are allowing people to see on social media. “If you do not want people to see something, you probably should not be doing it anyway…and you definitely should not be posting it.” What you need to know about social networking security.
  4. If you use multiple social channels in your professional life make sure that your message across those channels is consistent. Employers look on more than just LinkedIn to find out about your career. Again, if you do not want potential employers to see those profiles, adjust your privacy settings.
  5. Check your online reputation; search yourself in Google and see what appears. Run an image search as well. Get rid of photos that do not reflect you in a positive light.

Attend to Your Skills & Your Network:

It is never a bad time to brush up on your skills or to learn some new ones. When you are making an effort to stay on top of your job search materials be sure to add to your tool kit. Just like most things, your network can benefit from some attention as well!

  1. As time goes by and work piles up it can be difficult to stay up to date on the latest trends in your industry. Take some time to catch up.
  2. The skills we have can get rusty without proper attention. Update your industry specific skills to keep up with progress, brush up on the soft skills you already have and even learn a new skill to better yourself for future endeavors.
  3. Attend to your network, both internally and externally. Your network can benefit from your help, and you may need theirs down the road. Develop new relationships and nurture the ones you have. Do not let your connections stagnate any longer.

While you think about your upcoming “spring cleaning” this year, do not forget to commit some of your time to your career spring cleaning. Not only will you be prepared if something were to happen, but it is a good way to evaluate where you are at in your career and help you to plan out how to make positive movement toward your goals. Remember, you can do this outside and enjoy the new found spring weather at the same time!