With 2020 only a few weeks away, business leaders are already deciding how their companies are going to forge ahead into the new year. While this is the start of a new decade, some things remain the same.
A company should always seek to improve itself. The final goal of being “the best” at something is incremental and requires lots of small changes over the years to achieve. Thirteen experts from Forbes Coaches Council examine a few techniques business leaders can implement as they start planning for the new year, and explain why those methods are so important to achieving success.
1. Be Honest With Yourself
The hardest part of goal-setting is being realistic. It’s easy to attempt to convert every dream into goals, but far from easy to convert those goals into achievements. Be realistic when planning for the new year. Consider roles that automatically take time and attention and be sure to incorporate recovery and relaxation. This will refine your “open” time for work and make goals truly achievable.
2. Conduct Your Own SWOT Analysis
In addition to setting business strategy for the new year, be sure to set your own leadership strategy by conducting a personal SWOT analysis. Ask trusted, objective colleagues: “What are my top leadership strengths?”, “What are my top weaknesses?”, “What are my growth opportunities?”, “What are the internal (mindset) and external (marketplace) threats to my success?”. Plan your goals based on the feedback.
3. Humanize The Workplace
Planning for the new year starts with gratitude. It’s prudent to identify the highs and lows of the previous year. It’s also important for leaders to ensure that their team members understand the struggles and successes the organization had. Most importantly, pose a question to the team: “Where do we go from here and what’s the work to be done?” Be prepared to do the work together with a clear goal.
4. Develop Growth Plans For The Team
We get so wrapped up in what happened last year and what we want to accomplish next year that leaders often forget the most important part to these goals—their team! They forget that it’s their team that led them to success so far, and it will be their team’s growth that will lead them to the new year they want to achieve. Work with these individuals and help them get personalized growth plans!
5. Take Time For Self-Reflection
It is vital that leaders make time to reflect on the year gone past in relation to goals, actions, values, successes and, of course, their “best” failures of 2019! This gift of time to self-reflect allows leaders to take stock of what has and has not been accomplished and helps them pause and consolidate experiences in order to learn and focus on achieving more of what is desired in the year ahead.
6. Plan For Mental And Physical Strength
Most high-impact and ambitious leaders are excellent at planning professional goals, but they forget to secure time for energy renewal. I recommend looking at the 2020 agenda and plan for family events to participate in, friends’ reunions or routine outings to go to, winter holidays, summer holidays, regular “me time.” All of this will ensure that you will be physically and mentally balanced in 2020.
7. Focus On Only A Few Priorities
Look at the overly ambitious goals we all seem to make every year and slow your roll. A few key priorities are enough to power up your 2020. To have 2020 career vision, I recommend you get with your key players and really hone down those goals and get buy-in for the new year. For example, with three key priorities or bites of the elephant you will have to-dos that will make your list long enough.
8. Practice SMART Goal-Setting
When leaders are planning for a new year, it is important to begin with SMART goals. Goals are things you’d be proud to have accomplished within a certain time frame. SMART goals are strategic, measurable, attainable, realistic and time-bound with deadlines. The best goals have benchmarks and key performance indicators to measure success along the way. SMART goal-setting means planning for success.
9. Reinforce Being Strategically Agile
Setting the bar too high for your organization can leave your team feeling inadequate. Don’t forget to let your team know what things are important—and what things can shift based on the need of the business.
10. Be Ready To Give (And Take) Feedback
Despite what you may think about your workers receiving feedback about their performance, research shows that they not only want it, but they also want to give it to you. A whopping 65% of workers want more feedback. And that number swells to 80% for younger workers (76% of which also want to give their bosses feedback). So as 2020 kicks off, be generous with your feedback and open to criticism yourself.
11. Celebrate Wins And Acknowledge Losses
Wrapping up a year, and a decade at that, is an exciting time. As a leader reviews the wins and losses of the previous year, it is powerful to revisit the wins that were experienced. Acknowledging the misses through story will help ensure lessons are taken forward as valuable learning experiences. Casting a compelling vision will help generate momentum for a bright start to the new year.
12. Engage To Create Ownership
Incorporate employee engagement in your planning process. Ask for their input in two areas: 1) Ask them to identify issues and opportunities they think are critical for the company’s success. 2) Share the company’s top priorities and ask them how they think the company can best work toward those priorities. This gives you a chance to see a blind spot, and creates ownership of the top priorities.
13. Keep Your Eye On The Three Horizons
The Three Horizons Model developed by Baghai, Coley and White in the Alchemy of Growth is a great way for leaders to start 2020 with clarity, drive and excitement. In Horizon 1, you’re clear about your core business and how to expand it. In Horizon 2, you’re focused on what aspects of the business you’ll build for growth. And in Horizon 3, you’re exploring new ideas that will shape your future.
©2019 Forbes Media LLC. All Rights Reserved.
This article is shared on the Quality Media Consultant Group website due to the fact that Lori A. Manns was a contributor.
This article originally appeared on Forbes. Lori A. Manns is a member of the Forbes Coaches Council. Point #8 is Lori’s contribution to this article. To see other contributors and view the original post, please click here.