It’s that time of year again.. time to look back at the year that’s about to end and measure what’s worked, what could have gone better, and what New Years Resolution’s are appropriate.
The professional highlights were..
- an e-commerce business who experienced 59% Year-on-Year Revenue Growth
- an Art Gallery who experienced 50% Revenue Growth 60 days after a Strategic Planning & Alignment workshop
- a PR agency that gained focus on “what really matters” & improved their sales processes
- an illustration business that improved their gross margin by an undisclosed amount
- an internet start-up that launched it’s first real product within 45 days after many failed efforts during it’s first 18 months
- and another business that’s 15% above budget after a Strategic Planning & Alignment workshop in late September
- and a host of accolades
The personal highlights were..
- watching my wife’s “start-up” get significant market validation and secure another round of funding
- my kids from my first marriage turning around their falling grades to get serious recognition on their improvement
- my eldest son gaining greater self confidence and implementing serious change after attending Landmark Forum for Teens in October
- my youngest son getting over the complex of wearing glasses & thus improving his self confidence as well as behavior in school
- back in OZ building stronger bonds with new friends
- growing a new business and still being able to maintain a healthy dose of work-life balance
- supporting at least 3 friends in making significant life-changing decisions leading to their dream-life-by-design
These are just a snap-shot and they’ve made me even more sensitive for the need to record what’s working so that I can continue to “spread the love”.
Sure I had my share of set-backs, and with each one I was able to take significant learning’s to apply toward my development & growth. As my wife likes to remind me; every disciplined effort reaps multiple rewards, and the stronger the wind the stronger the tree!
Actually, “reviewing” is an exercise I do on a daily & weekly basis, as that’s the best way I find to keep pushing myself to learn & grow. How does that work? Well, I actually block-out 60 minutes in my daily calender at 19h00 to reflect back on the highs & lows of the day just passed.
And ask myself challenging questions such as..
- On a scale of 1-10, how do you feel about your day?
- What worked well & why?
- What didn’t work as well as you would have liked & why?
- What could have worked better?
- Were you busy or effective? (I actually ask myself this one throughout the day)
- What could you have done differently to change the outcome of the day?
- What are the key learning’s from today?
If you’re brutally honest with yourself & keep an open mind, seeking to understand, then this process becomes very powerful. Now, armed with this analysis of my day just passed, I’m ready to affect change into the planning of the day just ahead of me. I find this is the only way to consistently “up my game” from day-to-day. At the end of the week, on Friday afternoon, I do a very similar exercise, but broader in scope. More challenging questions reveal the underlying emotions that had me behave the way that I did, the results of which often reveal important patterns, some of which may even require 3rd party intervention to break. Typically however, a simple trusted circle of like-minded friends or professionals is enough to keep you honest & give you the necessary tools to “break through the glass ceiling” (a.k.a.. a good kick in the pants).
All-in-all I’m pretty satisfied with 2009. It’s had it’s ups & downs, highs & lows, but over-all, the year has been an overwhelming success! The biggest challenge I faced was the recent passing of my father just last week! Whilst it broke my heart to see him go, it also gave me even greater fervor to push myself even more, and continue to affect change & stay on purpose (to empower every relationship I touch)!
How about you? What’s the balance of your year? What do you need to do differently to make it a 10 out of 10?