More 2014 Goals– Beyond Client Work

More 2014 Goals-- Beyond Client WorkI may have gone a little overboard by coming up with 14 work-related goals for 2014. The 7 I covered last week are all about the kinds of clients and projects I want; going beyond that, here are some other goals I have for the next 12 months.

8. Teach in at least 2 forums. In the past I’ve done trainings in research for PR and a general “questionnaire design boot camp.” Last year I put together a Skillshare class on questionnaire design, and this summer I’m teaching at the University of Michigan’s Summer Institute in Survey Research Techniques— and looking for one other teaching opportunity, either online or in-person.

9. Visit 2 countries for a month each. I had a great time doing extended stays in Thailand and the Dominican Republic last year, and I still believe that travel makes me a better researcher (and a better person!). I’m shooting for 2 month-long stays this year; Mexico, Argentina, and Brazil are on the list. These choices reflect both my love for Latin America and one good lesson I learned last year: it’s really hard to work from Asia when most of my clients are on east coast time!

10. Attend at least one training. Since finishing grad school in 2012, I haven’t done as many classes or trainings as I’d like. I have a standing goal to do a webinar every month, but I want to amp it up this year– I’m thinking about moderator training at Riva.

11. Blog every week! I really do enjoy this blog, but it falls to the bottom of my list when meetings and deadlines loom. No more! I’m committing to a weekly post about my life and experiences in research. Watch this space!

12. Publish at least 1 academic paper. I have one paper in press for Field Methods and one under review for the Journal of Official Statistics— so I think it will be easy enough to keep a toe in academic waters.

13. Attend at least one conference. It’s hard for self-employed folks to attend a lot of conferences– even though I can probably use this kind of intellectual exchange more now than when I worked for big companies! Still, I shoot for one a year, and I’m already registered for Pioneer Nation, a conference for freelancers and entrepreneurs. It’s not until March but I’m already excited.

14. Find a professional mentor. This is a big one. I had amazing mentors everywhere I worked, and many of them are still on my speed dial today. I’d love to find someone who does the same kind of work that I do (primary research) in the same capacity (independently) who I can toss ideas around with, learn from, and turn to for counsel on everything from “What’s the best methodology for this project?” to “Should I hire someone?”
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Founder of Southpaw Insights