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Trevor E. S. Smith | Surviving 2017

Published:Sunday | January 8, 2017 | 12:00 AM

I am confident that you have resolved at some level, to do something better in 2017.

If by chance you have not done so, I suggest that you pause and identify one or more areas of your life you want to improve and commit to working on them.

Here are some thoughts that might be helpful.


1. Focus on resources


Cast your mind back to previous plans and resolutions.

- Would it be fair to say that your execution of the plans could have been better?

- Could additional support have made a difference in the outcome?

- What if you had more motivation and accountability, would you have pushed harder and longer?

- What if you had someone to work on the areas that kept slipping but you just did not have the energy or the capacity to address?

- What if you could have accessed wise counsel to assist with difficult decision-making?

- What if you had access to consolation and a place to just download and chill out?

- What if you had access to more financial and material resources?

If any of these questions ring true, then a focus on accessing appropriate resources could make a difference for you.


2. Your inner circle


Start by looking at those who are closest to you in your daily operations. Those with whom you interact most frequently. Conduct a candid evaluation of how those relationships are working for you.

The quality of your analysis and the action that you take could be the single most important factor impacting the results you achieve going forward.

This is not an exercise in undervaluing the contribution of others, or of being disloyal or even about how dependent you are on someone. The objective is to think about your destination and to identify the resources that will get you there. Compare that need with what is currently available. That should help you to be more effective in executing your plans.


3. Capacity development


What if your inner circle is not a perfect fit for what you plan to achieve? What can you do?


a. Internal Development


Your evaluation should have identified areas for improvement within your inner circle. Work to put in place the learning and developing, and coaching and mentoring actions that will make a difference.

I was hoping to dodge the issue, but your evaluation might point to the need to place less reliance on a member of your inner circle or even to exclude them from the circle. If they pose a threat to effectiveness and to achieving your objectives, taking bold action could be a key to your success. Find the delicate balance between rushing to separation and costly procrastination.


b. New resources


Sometimes opportunities will not wait until you can develop sufficient internal capacity to provide what is required. Being patient and taking a long-term view is admirable in some situations, however, there are times when decisive action must be taken to infuse new resources into your team.

Please do not add resources out of friendship, convenience or respect of persons. Conduct an objective Role Fit Analysis. Given the importance of your team to your success, it is advisable to get professional assistance. However, the essence is that you need to set out in clear terms the competencies that any new addition must bring to the table. Prepare that checklist before you start to think of individuals.

Armed with your concrete description of desired skills, start your search for someone who is the best fit for the role.

Remember, you are looking for someone who is going to move you closer to your goals. You are not seeking another manpower challenge.

You really need to take this issue of the composition of your inner circle and team seriously and make wise decisions.

Contact us for new approaches to fine tuning your inner circle, Role Fit Analysis and developing High Performing Teams.

Now enrolling for the Certified Behavioural Coach 2017 programme. Register now.

- Trevor E. S. Smith is a behaviour modification coach with the Success with People Academy home of the Certified Behavioural Coach programme that is accredited by the International Coach Federation and the Society for Human Resource Management. Email: