11 Ways to Make the Most of Your Time “On the Beach”
By: Kristine Schoonmaker
Picture it. You’ve made it through the incredibly competitive and rigorous recruiting process, gotten the offer, perhaps just come back from training and you’re primed and ready to start the exciting work of partnering with clients to find solutions to their problems. Only one problem…you’re not staffed! There’s no boss to tell you what to do with your day. Perhaps you don’t know anyone in your office – maybe you don’t even live in a city where there is an office. It can become very difficult to feel connected and valuable.
Here are 11 different ways to make the most of your time and set you up for success all year long.
- Set your annual goals. Make a list of the things you want to experience, learn, get exposed to or accomplish this year. Use this as criteria to proactively seek out projects that will offer these vs waiting for HR to put you somewhere.
- Get required training out of the way. There’s always some online training course that you have to complete. Let’s be honest, that’s the absolute LAST thing you will want to do at 11:15PM the night before the deadline – get it over with now.
- Close any skill gaps. Are there some areas you feel less than confident? Presentation skills, PPT, Excel, industry information and terminology? Figure out your biggest knowledge gaps and polish your skills in a low-pressure environment.
- Outsource or automate personal commitments so they don’t bog you down on the road – online bill pay, house cleaning, yard care and laundry to name a few…
- Draft your PPT CV/Resume or update your resume. There’s nothing worse than rushing to pull this together in a jam.
- Build or add to your resource (S.W.I.P.E.) file. A ready-made file of examples will give you much jump starts when you need them most.
- Get ready for your annual review. You heard me right. It’s a big deal, so why not take it as seriously as client work? Set milestones and create a process to track your contributions throughout the year.
- Make time to reconnect with friends. Time at home is precious – make the most of it.
- Sign up for reward programs and make your wish list. Corporate perks can save you lots of money. Don’t miss opportunities to take advantage of them.
- Get on a proposal team. Not only will you get good experience, it’s a great way to get picked up by the project team.
- Reach out to 3 new people in your office or practice. Even if it’s just over email or to schedule coffee, every connection you make is a valuable networking opportunity and one more resource to help you with staffing, deliverables, etc.
Consider what is going to bring you the greatest benefit. Just tackling 1-2 might make all the difference in the world when you start your next project!
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