Today is the end of the financial year, and for many businesses the plans, goals, strategies and projects they put in place at the beginning of the year may be just gradually moving along, or in some cases (thanks COVID) things may have been upended more than once.
At the beginning of the year we are typically all bright eyed and bushy tailed. We are refreshed from our traditional Christmas close down and break, we are motivated by our vision for the year ahead and excited to share it with our team.
For many of you that may have looked like a team planning and strategy day, where you got the whole team together, virtually or in person, to share the vision, get them excited and communicate clearly their role in making that happen.
That results in a great spike in engagement, as our teams all want to be part of something bigger, and when we can clearly articulate their roles in achieving that, and they can see what we’re working towards, they naturally get excited and want to succeed.
Realistically, that momentum typically lasts through the first quarter, and then sometime after Easter the momentum can start to dwindle. It may not be obvious or clear, but if you look back (because it’s easy to have 20:20 vision in hindsight), you’ll be able to see the signs. Sometimes it’s just a shift in energy, other times it’s more obvious with things like deadlines being missed, losing focus on key milestones, KPI’s being hit but not exceeded, or even worse not achieved.
For that reason quarter 2 of the calendar year can see a bit of a plateau in productivity, engagement, energy and achievements. Which makes the end of the financial year an ideal time for a mid year re set.
If I’m honest, in my opinion, having a quarterly reset with staff, including setting both individual and team based quarterly objectives which all lead back to the bigger picture vision of the operational objectives, is perfect. It’s not too often, it’s not overwhelming and it’s enough to keep engagement and motivation high.
But if that isn’t what you’ve done, because business and life gets busy, this is the perfect time to do that reset. What could that look like?
Whether it’s in person or virtually or a combination of both, getting everyone together to create engagement and cohesiveness is ideal at this time of year. When you’re all together everyone gets to be on the same page and everyone gets the same communication out to everyone at the same time.
One thing many of us as entrepreneurs aren’t great at is reflecting on our wins – so it can be easy to wash over this with our team as well. As part of your mid year reset take time for everyone to reflect on the last 6 months and share or at least make note of their wins and successes. What did they do well, what worked better than they thought, what did they learn, what was their favourite part of the last 6 months.
Be sure to let your team know at around this time what you have appreciated from them in the last 6 months. Whether it’s behavioural or results driven, both individually and as a team what have you noticed and what have you appreciated most. You can also definitely do some peer to peer appreciation activities at this time as well, if your team is of the right size and are open to this.
Now is a great time to re articulate the vision and the operational objectives for the next 6 months and beyond. What’s the big picture goal we’re all working towards? They might already know this, but re articulating it will help really cement it.
This is where you chunk it down, into quarterly, monthly and even weekly goals and milestones. In order to reach the big picture vision and objective, what milestones do they need to hit, generally as a team, to get you there. You will also want to set individual KPI’s but this discussion is best suited to the performance review discussion.
Create a forum in this meeting where you ask staff for their input. What do they need in order to achieve these objectives? What ideas do they have to support the business achieve the goals they have set? What can they see that might come up as an obstacle and how can we avoid this? Don’t limit yourself here, and remember to listen – it’s one thing to ask for the input, but it’s only effective if you really listen, understand and respond appropriately.
If you’re feeling like the motivation is waning a little in your workplace and want to get your team back on track, I’d encourage you to create this mid year reset opportunity. It might just be the thing that makes sure those objectives are successfully achieved.
If you’d like to engage more with me in these discussions about creating amazing teams, whilst also connecting with other like minded business owners, leaders and managers, I’d love for you to join us inside our free Facebook Group - https://www.facebook.com/groups/hrsupportaustralia