Now that we’re past the mid-year point, it’s an ideal time to fine-tune your work activities for the rest of the year so that you meet your 2013 job goals. Building a successful career starts with doing your current job exceedingly well and meeting your targets. Ask yourself the following questions to assess your progress:
1) What is going well? Start from a position of strength. Identify those projects, teams and individuals that are performing well. Any themes that arise from analysis of those activities that are going well? Is it due to clear goals, sufficient resources, the “right” resources, focus, or the people? How can you use these strengths to bolster projects that are not on track? Take what you learn and apply those strengths to other areas.
2) What is not going well? What projects are behind deadline or are consistently missing targets? What do you need to apply to these projects to get them on the right trajectory? Are these projects supported in a way that will lead to success? What are the major barriers – and do you have control over knocking those barriers down? If you don’t have control, do you continue? Are there some projects that you need to stop and cut your losses – to free those resources for the most impactful projects? Which leads to…
3) What should you STOP doing? What are the non-productive (or less productive) activities that either you personally or your team is conducting that may be soaking up too much time? This is one of the most difficult things to do in corporate America. If you can’t stop or delay any of the projects, are there administrative types of items you can stop – like reporting, like staff meetings, etc? We tend to get in routines. Question your routine, find those tasks that lead to unproductive time and stop doing them.
4) What do you need to START doing? You can’t merely continue to add new activities to your plate or your team’s plate and remain successful. That’s why you have to first identify those things you can stop doing or delay so that you can re-deploy those resources to higher-impact activities. You have a few months left in the year to hit your goals. What is the one thing your team should start doing that could most positively impact achieving your goals? Focus on that and nail it. Don’t spread your resources so thin that you don’t get any of it done.
Continually ask yourself what your key priorities are, and with these four questions in mind, align your time and energy and your team’s time, energy and focus on the right activities to reach your highest priority goals for 2013.