December 2012
Wrapping it Up (And We’re Not Just Talking Presents)!
It is amazing to me that another entire year has come and gone and once again I feel like we just started! At the same time, I reflect on all that has happened in the past year and I am totally overwhelmed. A Presidential election, the 2012 Summer Olympics, Superstorm Sandy…And those don’t even begin to hit on the events that have touched each of us personally. Which brings me to my point, as we begin to “wrap up” 2012 literally and figuratively, I find it is truly critical to focus on what is key to our lives and our success. For me that would be my faith, my family and friends, and then my clients. I have a feeling that the same could be said for most of you.
Is Your Staff On Board?
When employees share in the setting of their own goals, they’re more committed to achieving them. They develop a better sense of self-esteem in addition to sharpening their professional judgment. Follow this four-step process for participative goal setting:
• Take the lead. As a manager, you have the main responsibility for identifying performance targets. Start by creating a goal, or list of goals, and then ask your employees to evaluate it and tell you what might be unclear or inaccurate. Listen to the employee’s opinions as you revise the goals, and make sure you both know how you’ll measure the employee’s efforts.
• Formalize the plan. Once you’ve agreed upon employee goals, write them down so there’s no misunderstanding about what you’ve agreed to. You might have both parties initial the final version. Keep one copy for yourself, and give the employee his or her own for reference and motivation.
• Follow up. Hand the employee responsibility for follow-up by asking him or her to check in with you regularly while working toward goals. Agree on the follow-up intervals at the outset, especially if the employee is entering new territory where his or her skills may not yet be up to par. Write a reminder on your calendar to check in if the employee doesn’t come to you with a progress report on the specified date.
• Evaluate the process. Once the goal has been reached, meet with the employee to discuss what worked well and what didn’t. Ask for suggestions on how to improve things the next time.
December is … National Write a Business Plan Month
A solid business plan is essential for the success of any company. And what better time to start strategizing for the new year? Outline the areas you need to work on in order to increase revenues, shift marketing strategies, attract customers, and raise employee satisfaction.
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