The beginning of a new year is a great period of time to become a bit more introspective than normal—a time for new year reflections. It’s a chance to take an honest, reflective look at the past year and how you’ve performed versus how you intended to grow in the coming year. Using the following G.R.O.W. factors, rate yourself on last year’s performance, then use the same factors to help set new standards.
How much of a go-getter have you been? Self-management is one of the most difficult areas of life to conquer. Yet without it, it’s easy to end a year satisfied with less than you may have been capable of accomplishing. One’s go-getter potential is merely measured by one’s ability to be self-directed and follow through, despite barriers. Economic conditions mat tighten, yet go-getters find ways to hurdle financial barriers by being innovative, creating new markets, even expanding existing contacts by probing deeper. What criteria will you set to measure your new year’s go-getter ability?
Poet Robert Burns was right when he wrote, “The best laid plans of mice and men go oft awry.” Things do go wrong. It’s recovery that provides the magic. Looking back on things that went wrong this past year, regardless of whose fault it was, ask yourself, how may of the wrongs were you able to make right? Sometimes righting the wrong means accepting a financial sacrifice, yet far more often it merely requires an honest, personal connection. Often it’s as simple as saying, “I’m sorry—I messed up.” What will your philosophy be to right wrongs in this year and how willing will you be to admit when a mistake is yours and yours alone?
Over-delivering should not be confused with the trite statement of “under-sell-and-over-deliver.” No. It’s important to sell right to begin with. Whether it’s a product, a service or a personal commitment, perhaps you’re able to not just deliver on time, but early. Or, in the case of a personal commitment, perhaps you can make a commitment to someone just when they least expect it. Should you be unable to deliver on time, how about taking time to do something totally unexpected, like writing a simple handwritten note? When is the last time you got a personal, handwritten note from someone who underperformed on a project for you? See what I mean? Most importantly, what new and unique ways can you use this year to pleasantly surprise someone by over-delivering?
Every gardener knows that in order for the best crop to flourish, it is necessary to occasionally weed out others. The same is true of your client list—and sometimes, even organizations you’ve been involved with as well as your personal relationship list. As you grow, it becomes necessary to re-evaluate where and how you spend your time. Unfortunately, there are always a few current clients, organizations, even personal relationships that may need to be weeded out so others more fruitful and meaningful can come into full bloom for this time in your life. A new year is an ideal time to evaluate your weeding, as well as your planting. Be sure you weed thoughtfully, with kindness and grace.
By incorporating these simple G.R.O.W. factors into your new year reflections and applying well thought out responses to your planning, you will improve your performance and growth in the year ahead.