The year has begun at full steam ahead for many clients planning for college, graduate school, internships and jobs. No matter what your direction, here are our three easy New Year’s resolutions to get yourself off on the right track:

1. Understand your strengths and interests. Pure and simple. This may seem obvious to some but to others it is not.

Complete personality assessments such as the Myers Briggs Type Instrument which will highlight your innate preferences related to how you direct your energy, process information, make decisions and live your life. From those preferences, you can read about suitable matches in learning style, majors and careers based on highly accurate statistical studies. Often the findings are just an affirmation of what you and others already know.

Draft a resume, identifying a profile of academic, work and extracurricular accomplishments. The resume emphasis will depend on where you are in your educational and career journey. This process helps you to really think about your identity, creating a succinct description of your experience and adaptable skills that will impress college admissions officers and future employers alike. Communication and leadership characteristics are important. Visit a local book store to pick up resources on how to make your resume shine with these and other action verbs.

2. Do your research and network.

Learn as much as you can about a particular college, job or industry that offers a match to your interests and talents. Study websites to familiarize yourself with the culture, mission, expectations, management, and future direction. Contact as many people as possible with a direct link to schools and organizations. Use networks such as friends, family, neighbors, alumni and more. Don’t be bashful. Others have been in the same place as you so reach out in the form of a cup of coffee at Starbuck’s or a quick call…whatever it takes to get the next best connection. The more you connect, the faster you’ll reach your goals.

3. Create a professional online presence on Facebook and/or LinkedIn.

Your media presense is vital in today’s technology based world and serves as an excellent resource for finding opportunities for the next step in your life. Like and link up with as many people as possible and make sure your profile/message is clear from one resource to another.

By accomplishing these three simple resolutions for the New Year, you’re off to a fabulous start to creating a professional profile and media presense, establishing connections and learning as much as possible about exciting options for education and career.

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