Do you have your Professional New Year’s Resolution?

Posted by & filed under Leadership, Reflection.

Most of us start the year with some ghastly personal resolution that we intend to keep, we keep for the first week of the year, and then, full of guilt… forget.

What about our professional resolution… Should we have one? The beginning of the year also provides an opportunity to reflect on how we can address some of our own development needs, make a more positive impact on our surroundings, and drive overall stronger performance.  As Leaders we are tasked with mandatory managerial duties.  It is part of what makes us great Leaders.

Looking at the issues our clients faced last year, I sadly have to say that the same issues were faced by them a year earlier, and even before that.

As Leaders and Managers we still struggle with:

  • Providing ongoing feedback, both positive and developmental. We may have plenty of excuses – lack of time, lack of skill, lack of courage…
  • Deploying resources well and taking a step back to be more strategic. We often cling too long to a task, micromanage, and fail to delegate meaningful responsibilities to others.
  • Dealing with conflict. We might be afraid to offend, damage relationships or are scared of consequences of having our own point of view.

So, before making any resolutions, please take a moment and acknowledge that most of our people work for us as people, and not really for the company. Be humbled by the fact that we have a tremendous amount of equity as Leaders.

If we want to make a bit of a difference this year, we should ask ourselves the questions below and maybe, just maybe, they will help form a New Year’s Resolution that has the desired impact.

  1. Explore the degree of justice in your practice. Do you have favourite employees? Do you give the same amount of opportunities to others who deserve them? Do you give generous feedback on performance, ensuring people do not feel taken for granted, recognized and guided to perform at their peak? Are you fair?
  2. Be intelligent enough to know where you are not. Do you hire people who are better than you? Do you have the courage and humility to surround yourself with people smarter than you? Do you give them space to do their best work? Do you micro-manage?
  3. Do you allow your fears and ego to get in the way of doing the right thing? Do you avoid dealing with conflict? Would you be considered wise when addressing sensitive situations?
  4. Are you available to discuss, connect, build, and maintain meaningful relations at work? Do you take time to show and care for people on your team? Do you smile and actually wait for the answer to your question of “How are you”?

Happy musings and a very happy 2016.


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