It’s time. I don’t know about you, but I don’t see us ‘returning to normal’ next year. Instead, I see a return to different, but not to the old ways pre-COVID.
So, I find it impossible to look with 10000% certainty at any of the old thinkings and methods we once employed. It’s time to think differently
I’ll be supporting a few different ideas with my clients in the coming year. I’d like to share a few today — on the off chance you’d like to try them too.
No hard targets. It’s time for ‘ish.’
Every company I have ever worked for, with or advised, has a reasonably concrete budget or plan with fairly concrete sales and profit targets. Why is that? Because once upon a time, that was the all-important bedrock of leading. Concrete projections. Yet, the truth was, it was rare for a company to meet or exceed those hard targets without a bit of finagling, a whole bunch of excuses and the occasional cheerful and upbeat obfuscating story.
This next year I think it more important to strive for a range. I call that range the ‘ish.’ What that range is — depends on the company culture. For some, a 10% +/- works; for others, a 20% +/- is better. The actual range does not matter. What is most important is the degree of latitude the people have.
I am not advocating our teams lose focus. Nor am I advocating a laissez-faire way of leading. I am supporting a way to remove the self-imposed pressure and go for the ish. Because in my experience, a non-stressed, focused and appreciated team always delivers far more than the minimum. Let’s all start by embracing that truth.
Allow time to be
Seth Godin made an astute observation the other day. Aimless clicking or wandering around in a digital swamp is a pretty common way to spend an hour these days. Yet, we would never consider doing this in a forest. Walking over to a tree because it looked sort of interesting, standing there for a minute, then wandering away. Tree after tree, for hours. So, the next time we consider wasting an afternoon clicking on whatever baits us, it likely makes more sense to go for a walk instead.
I agree with him and encourage all companies to allow for walking time. Whether alone or in groups, there is absolutely nothing better for recharging fried nerves, banishing exhaustion and burnout and dialling up creativity and innovation than getting back to nature. Make it a part of the daily routine and watch those profits soar.
Make way for strict time routines.
Regardless of what position we hold, what function we do or where we work, we have all lost our ability to focus on anything for stretches of time. And one of the best ways to master anything is repetition. That is why I will be encouraging some sacred time blocks during the coming year. Time blocks of no more than 90 minutes. Dedicated to one activity that moves the business, your function, or even your goalposts forward. Not busy time; effective time. Every single day.
So that at the end of the day, the week and the month, you are always able to point to a small victory—the slice of your day, where you moved the needle and got the important stuff done. Because everybody needs to have a regular win.
For the year nearly upon us, I believe what is needed the most is calculated action. Whatever you choose for the coming year, be sure you have a strategy and then focus on the steps you need to execute that strategy. You can win 2022 if you are willing to change your thinking for the better.
Would you like to chat about that? Hit me up!