I’ve just taken two bits of paper off my fridge door – each one contained written evidence of New Year’s Resolutions made as we began 2017. One was written by my husband – it said “to do everything I am asked to do by my spouse”, the other was written by my elder daughter; “to work really hard, eat really healthily and get super fit and stuff”. What a marvellous year it has been for me, as a wife and mother, to see these resolutions faithfully observed …..
Ha! As if …. Over the course of 365 days, these optimistic (fantastical?) promises became hidden by postcards, vouchers, letters and photos. Perhaps that’s why neither resolution lasted too long in its pure form. But who cares really? Maybe the flamboyant promise is just a glitzy launch of more nuanced nudges in life. The moment of making the resolution is a great opportunity to press pause and think about things you’d like to be doing differently, even if your original grand ambition proves a little tough to live up to.
Today is that slightly tricky day for lots of us. The day after the big return to work from the Christmas break. You’ve caught up on news, cleared your inbox and now it’s time for the hard graft again. But, if you just crack on, you’ll miss that chance to stop and and consider some of your ambitions in your work life. So, before you get your head down and get to it, there’s a really simple way to reveal the challenges or opportunities you’ve got some real passion for this year. While your colleagues are still in that “fresh start – anything’s possible” state of mind, get them together and get them to answer these simple questions frankly and with passion:
- Which parts of your work frustrate you?
- What risks or uncertainties are making you nervous?
- What delights you about your work?
- What do you admire your competitors for?
- What do your customers love you for?
- Do you think there are things you should be doing differently at work?
- If you or your team were granted 3 wishes, what would they be?
Encourage people to speak from the heart and try to capture what they say verbatim – that way you won’t get watered-down, fuzzy answers. Ban business jargon (nothing clouds clarity more) and encourage people to be bold and brave with their responses.
When you’ve got all the answers down – take some time to read them all through again. It should be easy to pick out some great pithy challenges that you all have some passion for.
These are your things you’d all like to be doing differently in your professional life. Don’t just carry on as normal in 2018 – nudge yourself onto a better path and start the year with the same heady optimism that some of us feel when we write our hopeful resolutions.
If you’d like a little help getting this quick and simple session absolutely right for you and your team, please do get in touch with us. We’d be really happy to have a quick conversation and offer facilitation tips that can make these moments of reflection really powerful and valuable. We can also offer concrete ideas for how to start tackling these challenges creatively as a team.