Finish Strong: Craft Your Fourth-Quarter Strategy
Effective teams and organizations use a closed-loop approach to ensure that each objective, project or event is reviewed to track progress or the final outcome.
The end of the year is an ideal time to close your open loops and zero-in on the projects that need wrapping up.
In your next team meeting, ask these questions to get a better understanding of where the group can make an impact and deliver value:
Revisit. Looking back on what the team committed to in January and what it's accomplished in the first three quarters of the year, what more can be done to make complete projects more impactful. What's changed in the interim that might require rethinking your solution?
Re-evaluate. Take inventory of what's left on your team's plate. Do these goals or projects still make sense? Has the landscape changed significantly enough that you need to start over on strategy or planning?
Rejoice! As always, spend time celebrating the group's accomplishments. The pressures on you and your staff have probably never been more fierce than in today's work environment. You have more to do between now and the new year, but recognizing what you've achieved can help generate enthusiasm and energy for a strong year-end push.
Is this the time and place for a leadership message? Absolutely. You'll want to clarify the goals, explain team member's roles and articulate your vision of success. But overall this should be a conversation, not a lecture.
Build on your success and lessons learned from last year and you'll shape a breakthrough 2012.