With only a few days left to this year, it’s natural that many of us are now breathing a sigh of relief that we’ve seen through the completion of another year at work. And if you’re one of the fortunate ones in today’s tough business climate, you’re probably also feeling that sense of relief that comes from achieving the goals we set out for ourselves, our team and our organization 11 months ago.
While many of us use the last week of December to rest and recuperate, it’s important that we not overlook the opportunity this time presents for reflection and review.
Indeed, whether this year was full of successes or losses, there is much that we can gain from the exercise of assessing not just what went right/wrong and why, but whether our efforts, culture, and beliefs remain aligned with our organization’s shared purpose.
To help with this process, I’d like to provide you with a series of questions to help you assess what lessons and insights you’ve learned over the past 12 months as you guided your organization towards your shared goals. For those who’d like to examine some of the questions in further detail, I’m also providing a link to a piece I wrote this year that reveals something about each question and what you can do to help your employees to achieve their shared goals.
- How often did we exceed expectations and what were the conditions that allowed us to accomplish that? What I can do to facilitate and encourage my employees to do this again?
Do You Lead Your Organization To Meet Or Exceed Expectations?
- What actions or behaviours do I exhibit which help to enable and empower my employees to achieve what’s assigned to them?
Creating A Culture That Promotes Problem-Solving Delegation
- How am I managing the rising demands on my time and focus, and what could I do better next year to keep my focus on what my employees require from me?
3 Truths About Keeping Our Focus In A Sea of Distractions
- How familiar am I with the daily challenges/obstacles my employees face and what can I be doing more of to help them address and better manage them?
How Are You Helping Your Employees To Be Your Organization’s Heroes?
- In those situations where I misread or misunderstood what was really going on, were there commonalities among the missing pieces that highlight a potential blindspot in my leadership?
Recognizing The Perception Gaps In Your Leadership
- How consistent have I been with my actions and words? Is it clear to my employees what my vision is of what I want us to accomplish and why it connects to what matters to them? And have I consistently provided them with the right conditions to be successful in their efforts to fulfill this vision?
5 Key Steps To Cultivating Success In Your Organization
- Do I encourage and remind my employees of the importance of taking breaks from work both to reconnect with their family as well as to recharge their batteries to better manage the challenges going forward?
Are Summer Vacations Becoming A Thing Of The Past?
- Have I promoted and encouraged changes to address the evolving needs of my employees? What other measures can I implement to tap into the talent found in today’s workforce?
3 Keys To Successfully Leading Today’s Evolving Workplaces
- How aware have I been about the impact my emotional state has on the kind of behaviours I want to see in those I lead? Am I modeling the conduct I expect to see in my employees?
Helping Your Team To Find The Silver Lining When Things Go Wrong
- Do I facilitate a learning environment where failures are treated as opportunities to better understand our processes/market, or do my employees focus more on deflecting blame and accountability? How attentive are we to the needs/requirements of our customers and those we serve?
Are Your Actions Setting Up Your Employees To Succeed?
- How clear is my understanding of the motivational drives of those I lead and how I can tap into those more in a way that encourages greater participation/involvement in our organization’s goals?
3 Principles For Creating Team Harmony In Today’s Fast-Paced Workplaces
- What am I doing to build trust and a sense of community in our organization? Do my employees feel connected to their work, to each other and to our shared purpose?
Building A Sense Of Community To Help Your Organization Thrive
Although these questions are not comprehensive, they will help you to reflect and review the various decisions and choices you’ve made in terms of the key lessons you’ve learned this year. Lessons that you can put into use in the coming year to help you do a better job serving those under your care in the months and years ahead.
And on that note, as this will be my last post for this year, I would like to express my appreciation and gratitude to all my readers for your continued interest and support for my writings on leadership and the challenges organizations face in today’s competitive global market.
It’s been my pleasure and honour to know that these writings have served both to inspire and encourage you to take full advantage of your ability to help those under your care to succeed and thrive. I look forward to seeing where this journey will take us next in the months to come and what lessons we can learn together as we move forward into the new year.