It's a new year and you're convinced that you're a new you. Your company has just approved yet another insane budget that's been set for unimaginable spending and is now looking for the next Paul Allen in the ranks. You feel confident about being this new go-to guy for the big bosses and have bought a brand spanking new PDA to keep yourself atop the ‘new responsibilities'. But, are you on the right track to corporate heaven? Or have you just wasted half your salary on a gadget that you won't even be able to use.
Let's go through what you've done, where you stand, what you should have done, and where you should be headed. Get that PDA ready coz it involves taking down notes. A lot of it!
In knowing if you are indeed on the expressway to better placement, it takes a lot of honest introspection, because unfortunately no one knows whether you're going to have a better new year than you.
First, ask yourself about the year that was. Where were you on the corporate ladder? Did you find yourself going up more often than not? Figure out the plus/minuses of your actions. And no, being the last man standing at the company barbeque does not count as a positive career move. Then ask yourself again if you are where you saw yourself in this company at this particular point. If you're a few right turns short, then you better figure out how to get there.
Afterwards, go into the serious questions like, is your job the right one for you? Are you happy with it? Are you getting paid enough? Is the working environment one that you find conducive? These are fundamental questions that one should constantly be aware of, primarily because if you find yourself answering a resounding NO to every single one of these questions, then you should be considering some options.
But, options aside first, there is also another set of questions that you have to ask yourself before deciding. Questions like: Are you living up to your company's expectations? (Regardless of how unrealistic some might be.) Are you really working hard on your job? Are you confident that you give the proverbial 110% into everything that you are assigned to do? Do you take initiative? Do you take responsibility? These are also as basic as the aforementioned questions in the sense that they are expected of you as an employee in whatever position you currently hold, and more so if you aim at being promoted or reassigned. Remember that wherever you go, whatever position you are given - you must always have an honest YES as an answer for these.
The reason why these questions are pointed out is because there really is no other way of assessing if you will have a successful career. Everything follows from this point on, whether you decide on seeking out employment elsewhere or sticking it out with the company you're in at the moment. As for getting a successful career, that depends all on you. If you've done well, then you will be having a successful career, and maybe in a few months you can put that new PDA to some good use.