There’s an old saying I often think about: the shoemaker’s son has no shoes. It refers to a shoemaker who is so busy working for his customers that he is left with no time for his son. Most people who own or work for agencies are now nodding their heads...
So you're back in the office and back to your routine. It's time to put those plans into action! This year, I encourage you to make not only personal resolutions, but to take a look at your business as well. Take a moment at the beginning of this amazing new year—with all its potential—and decide how you will achieve the goals and objectives you’ve already identified.
1. Don’t fog up your rear-view mirror. Nothing great was accomplished by living in the past. But the most invaluable lessons come from stutter steps, growing pains, and let’s be honest, less than great calls. Pick three mistakes you made this year (not just instances of bad luck but actual real missteps), write them down, and place them on your desk. Give it a month or maybe even two and possibly three if you can (this is important) and come back to that list. Now, write down how you overcame those mistakes, recovered from them, and turned would-be failures into examples of your leadership.
2. It takes champions, not champion. We have a brand foundation document in our office. It’s specific to our vision as a company but I will tell you that it has real, actionable words like reliability, passion, and leaders. A funny thing happened when I made the decision to put this document on everyone’s desk: people became empowered. I mean truly, empowered. A successful company is not just a couple of people making decisions; it’s a collaboration of champions who believe in what they are doing. Let this be the year that everybody shines.
3. Now you’re ready to make a road map. The Globe & Mail very recently came out with a great article encouraging small businesses—personally I think that everyone should do this—to make a road map. Don’t feel that it has to linear or polished, in fact it’s better if it’s not (besides, you’ve already done that when you made your year-end budget reviews and business objectives back in the fall). Rather, tell a story of how the next year will play out. Identify the heroes and villains, the opportunities, and the possibilities, and if by Q2 the story brings about some unexpected turns, well, that’s when we exclaim “plot change!” and get back to excitement of doing what we do best. After all, isn’t that why we became entrepreneurs in the first place?
Have an amazing 2017 everyone!