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5 reasons why it's important to evaluate your career in January

Returning to work after a long, relaxing festive break can be a daunting thought for most people. Going back to work marks an end to your free time spent with family and friends, as you come to terms with a sudden knock back to reality.

Are you struggling to find your rhythm back at work?

It is estimated that around 1 in 5 people look for a new job in January - and with hiring managers opening new job opportunities, there couldn’t be a better time to see what’s out there.

Habiba Khatoon, Director at Robert Walters in Milton Keynes explains why January is the perfect time to evaluate your career and reach for your dream job.

New Year’s resolutions

New Year, New Me? Sound familiar?

“January is a time when people look to evaluate all aspects of their lives - their careers being a major one", says Habiba.

Many of us plan for personal changes in the new year that will improve our lives, and if your current job is bringing you dissatisfaction, your career will be the first thing you look to change. Evaluate the pros and cons of switching jobs and outline what factors would bring job satisfaction for you. January is the perfect time to set yourself new career goals, as it’s the time when the job market sees a peak in opportunities...

Appraisals and promotions

In January, the company calendar is upheaved with pay reviews and appraisals so it’s a good time to calculate the value of your key skills, benchmark your salary against other roles and see what other opportunities are out there.

Habiba explains, “We see a lot of turbulence in the recruitment market in the early months of the year. If employees don’t see a salary negotiation going their way, or don’t secure the promotion they had their eye on, this can trigger resignations, counteroffers and buy-backs".

If you're disappointed by what your employer is offering, it might be worth looking for opportunities where you feel your salary better reflects your work.

Adapting your career to personal changes

December has been known to be the time when the most drastic changes take place with people’s personal lives.

Habiba explains, “For example, late December is the time for most marriage proposals, and early December is when the greatest number of break-ups happen”.

An improved work-life balance is now a huge focus for the majority of organisations looking to enhance employee morale and productivity, so it could be time to look elsewhere if your employer isn’t on board with this.

With big changes like this happening in your personal life, it might be time to consider a career which better fits your new lifestyle.

Reflecting on your work-life balance

Spending time with your friends and family over the festive break is an opportunity to really consider your work-life balance.

Habiba says, “If an employee has a heavy workload, working late, and a long commute, then they are likely to come back in January wanting to do something to change this”.

Explore your options and research jobs allowing for more flexibility to work around your personal life. An improved work-life balance is now a huge focus for the majority of organisations looking to enhance employee morale and productivity, so it could be time to look elsewhere if your employer isn’t on board with this.

Beat the January blues!

January is renowned for being the longest, darkest and gloomiest month of the year – with Blue Monday claimed to be the most depressing day of the year. Finding an exciting new opportunity could beat those January blues.

“Use this time as an opportunity to lift your spirits, be optimistic and search for your dream job that will mean you come out of January feeling empowered in your career”, advises Habiba.

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