Setting goals is an important part of pacing your work and professional development. Ambitious goals are slightly out of reach, forcing you to get creative with how you execute. Take a regular task and try to make it hyper-efficient or tackle a new project that has heavy or large amount of challenges attached.
Ambitious goals shouldn’t be designed to be dreadful. Don’t set a goal for yourself that just tacks on hours to your workday. Instead, they should explore some previous boundary of your job, whether that’s expanding your role, increasing your efficiency, or providing more value than ever.
Here’s how ambitious goal-setting can help you as a professional.
Part of setting an ambitious goal involves pushing the boundaries of your comfort zone. Getting too comfortable and familiar in your role can put you on the fast track towards a stale and outdated skillset. The best way to stay ahead on your own professional development is to set ambitious goals that require you to learn something new.
It might be a new piece of technology to better optimize your work processes, a new method of doing something that is being talked about in blogs and Twitter chats in your industry, or even an entirely new idea of your own. Whatever it is, implement it as a way to get your next project done faster, more effectively, or more efficiently.
Part of moving up the career ladder involves the evolution of your skillset. Your next promotion, raise, or bonus won’t come if you don’t put in the effort above and beyond what is asked of you. By setting ambitious goals regularly, you’ll drive yourself to learn the skills you need to further your own career. If you achieve your goals, they’ll likely be resume-worthy.
Too many working professionals fall into slumps in their careers out of boredom and unhappiness. Crucial to job satisfaction is the feeling that you’re doing something worth your time. For the work that you’re doing to satisfy you, there should be a sense of challenge and excitement. Luckily, you can create that challenge and excitement on your own, even if your daily assignments are bland.
All you need to do is get creative with your job. Find ways to work with others, or work beyond what is expected of you. You will feel a sense of passion and drive that will keep you moving forward. You will come in to work every day ready and motivated as a self-starter.
Your accomplishment of ambitious goals will be noticed. Your manager will see that you’re completing tasks faster and more efficiently. Your peers will notice that you’re tackling new or challenging projects.
As you move forward and provide higher quality results for your team, you’ll open the doors for discussions about raises, promotions, and expansion of responsibilities. And if you don’t find it within your current organization, you’ll be able to take your accomplishments and shop them to other employers.
So the next time you get an assignment, find a way to improve on it that would require some extra effort on your part, and get it done!