Labor Day is the last vacation weekend of the summer, and I was incredibly fortunate to spend it on Long Beach Island this year. It was glorious! I read trashy novels at the beach, ate enough fresh lobster and crabs to last me until next year, puttered around on boats and kayaks, and spent quality time with dear friends.
But, like everyone else, now it’s time to get back to work.
Whether you’re looking for a new job or heading back to the same job, it’s time for us to re-engage our brains, buckle down and get back to work. However, for some, saying goodbye to the lazy days of summer may be challenging.
Here are 8 tips for going back to work with a bang.
1. Update Your Résumé
An updated résumé that reads like a “success story” not only helps job seekers get a new job, but helps employed professionals promote themselves within their organizations. Don’t let the sluggish days of summer cause undue amnesia when it comes to celebrating your successes.
2. Reconnect with Your Network
Between varying travel schedules and taking the kids to camp, there’s not a lot of extra time to network during the summer months. Now is the time to reach out those quality connections and get reconnected. Networking is truly the key to success.
3. Clean Your Desk
Whether it’s cleaning out your desk at home or at the office, take time to get organized. Papers, projects, and post-it notes can accumulate over the summer, and no one is fully productive or completely efficient when they need to wade through clutter. Start fresh with a clean slate and a clean desk.
4. Find the Focus
Over the summer priorities change and a sense of urgency takes a vacation. Revisiting those professional goals and objectives, making a strategic action plan, and getting focused is the best way to get back to work.
5. Get Engaged
It’s not about getting married; it’s about increasing your visibility within your organization, industry, and/or community by volunteering for selective and strategic extra-curricular activities. Donating your time, expertise, talents, and passion not only can feed your soul, but can catapult your career to the next level.
6. Give LinkedIn a Facelift
It’s easy to take a vacation from LinkedIn during the summer…out of sight, out of mind. Now is the time to give your profile a full review and a much-needed facelift. Do you have a new headshot that needs to be uploaded, did you get a new job or promotion over the summer that needs to be announced, or do you have several invitations waiting in your inbox that need a response? LinkedIn is an incredibly useful online tool, but only if you use it.
7. Participate in Professional Development
Just like it’s time for the kids to go back to school for intellectual stimulation and challenge, it’s time for the same thing to happen at work. Going back to work is about reactivating your brain and taking advantage of those professional development opportunities that can spark new ideas and expand your mental horizons.
8. Be a Mentor, Get a Mentor
No one achieves any level of success alone, and the best way to get back on track is by finding a mentor. The right mentor will not only model critical professional behavior, but will also hold you accountable as you set your sights on that next level in your career. And nothing will help you re-engage faster than being a mentor for someone else.
Just like our kids heading back to school, it’s time for us to put away the sunscreen and get back to work. This is my favorite time of year. The temperature drops and my energy level and enthusiasm for the work I do heats up…it’s time to Woman UP!