By: Kaitlyn Lambert, Account Executive

After taking some time away from the office to celebrate the holidays, the start of January offers a great opportunity for channeling renewed energy to look back at the previous year and take steps to set yourself up for success in the new year.

When you begin to lay-out all of the items you’d like to accomplish in the next twelve months, the start of a new year may seem daunting. Here are some easy steps and goals to set that will help earn you some small victories at the start of the new year, and help you put your best foot forward going into 2019.

  1. Revamp your media lists. Depending on your lists, this can seem like a herculean task, but there’s no better time for a media list refresh than the beginning of the year. Not only should you look at the individual reporters that you pitch to make sure all of their information is up to date, but look at whole outlets as well. The media landscape is changing faster than ever so make it a goal for the new year to stay on top of these updates.
  2. Get organized. Do you have hundreds of sticky notes on your desk with random to do’s, phone numbers, and ideas? Make it a goal to get your desk organized. Depending on the state of things, this one can likely be knocked out in a few focused hours so it’s a great short-term project that will make you feel good about going into a new year, and who knows, maybe sorting through some of your old papers will spark a new idea! Depending on your own vices, getting organized might mean organizing your inbox as well. Seeing thousands of unread emails everyday is stressful, so don’t bring that into the new year if you don’t have to.
  3. Read new outlets. We can all be guilty of falling into comfortable habits when it comes to our own media consumption. Reading multiple outlets covering a wide range of topics is especially beneficial if you’re working with clients in multiple, unique industries, but even if you’re focused on one industry, reading about others has the potential to spark new ideas. Make it a goal to read articles from 3 new outlets a day and you might be rewarded with new ideas or find new reporters covering topics relevant to your work.
  4. Be more efficient. Whether it’s meetings that drag on or a task that you just can’t bring yourself to complete, inefficiencies in your workday can be found everywhere. Make your days more productive by going into all meetings with a set agenda, and don’t stray from it. If new topics come up in meetings that warrant extended conversation, schedule seperate time to talk through it with the appropriate people. When it comes to difficult tasks, set yourself a strict deadline if you don’t already have one and give yourself milestones to achieve so you can ensure you’re on your way to completion.
  5. Don’t slack on personal correspondence. This may not apply to all but for me, after spending the day writing up emails and correspondence, I’ll put-off sending a note to family or friends. So for me, putting some more care into my own correspondence is going to help put me in the right mindset to be more efficient and better motivated in the new year.

Most importantly, find what works for you and do it. Looking back at 2018 should give you an idea of what worked and what can be improved in the year ahead, so get started!