Sun | Dec 17, 2017

Trevor E. S. Smith | Stocktaking - Personal & Organisational

Published:Sunday | November 19, 2017 | 12:00 AMTrevor E. S. Smith

As another year draws to a close, what have we done with it?

The inevitable stocktaking and concerns about where time has gone, is about to hit us. This happens at the personal and organisational levels, and is part of a cycle with the next phase being the optimistic planning and commitments with respect to the coming year.

 

Personal

 

This checklist is intended to provide a review of your year.

 

Outlook

 

- What stands out as your achievements this year?

- In what areas have you made progress?

- Have you achieved any goals that you set?

- Were there any unplanned breakthroughs?

- What is your mental state? Are you feeling good about yourself?

- Are you in a better place financially? How is your health and fitness?

- What about your relationships and your spiritual grounding?

 

Concerns

 

- Did you encounter disappointments this year? What are they and what are their implications?

- Have you lost ground instead of making progress? Where? What can be done to address those situations?

- Has your peace of mind or self-confidence been shaken? Can you identify the root causes? What can be done to address those challenges?

- Can your current level of income meet your obligations? What are your options?

- If you are encountering health issues, have you diligently pursued the best available advice?

- Have you neglected important relationships?

- Have you stepped back from your spiritual commitments?

 

Work-in-progress

 

- What steps for improvement are you currently pursuing?

- How are those developmental projects progressing? Are they on track with your expectations?

- Who is holding you accountable for completing your plans for development?

 

Commitments

 

- After reviewing, what commitments are you making going forward?

Avoid broad commitments as they are difficult to execute and monitor. "I want to be happy" is not helpful. Identify very specific goals and set out step-by-step action plans to achieve each one.

"I am going to call my father tomorrow as a first step in mending our relationship as the estrangement is affecting my happiness".

It is also important to list the commitments in order of priority. At any point in time, you should be working on the most important action that can be undertaken. Each step in your action plan should be linked to a priority commitment. In other words, if you sign up for a course, it should have direct bearing on an established goal. The aim is to focus your actions on moving you closer to achieving desired objectives. Without this laser-focus, you will be tossed to and fro by winds of fancy or the influence of others.

 

Organisational

 

Organisations also have their end-of-year 'stocktaking' procedures. This may encompass a review of physical inventory, financial and operating audits, performance appraisals, and the matching of actual versus plan in multiple dimensions.

 

Employee Audit

 

One stocktaking activity that is not routinely conducted on an annual basis, is feedback from employees. This is even more surprising at a time when employee engagement is critically low and studies indicate that leadership is struggling to cope with the changing face of the workforce.

Given that employees are the agents through which the strategies, plans, and goals of the organisation are executed and achieved, can there be a more important indicator than the employees' perspective on what transpired during the year? Their mindset must be a central consideration.

Investments in audit fees are not questioned. However, the audit results are, to a great extent, the equivalent of driving looking through your rear-view mirror. On the other hand, keeping your finger on the pulse of the mindset that employees are taking into the future, provides context for future-ready corrective action. The state of employee satisfaction must inform organisational action.

 

Call to Action

 

The Success with People Academy conducts customised Employee Satisfaction Surveys, as well as 360 Assessments on the revolutionary FinxS Platform from Extended DISC. The process is swift, logistically-friendly and cost-effective using advanced technology.

Takes action now to fill this critical gap in your year end 'stocktaking'. Listen to the voices that matter most at a surprisingly low cost.

- Trevor E. S. Smith and the Success with People Academy team prepare and certify coach mentors and develop high-performing teams. Hire smart with their recruitment solutions. Now enrolling for the January cohort of the ICF/SHRM-Accredited Certified Behavioural Coach programme.