In the end of the year instalment of anonymous career advice, a leader asks an important question to kick off 2022 well.
Dear focus, I want to kick off 2022 well. What are three things I can do as a mid-sized business leader?
In most businesses the leader has to show the direction you are headed, why you are looking forward to the year ahead and how the departments and teams will be leading from the front and where they will be collaborating.
In all of the businesses I have worked in, worked with or consulted on, there are a number of selective characteristics that are run through. All involving direction setting, thanking and ensuring you reference the importance of your people and their performance (collectively and individually).
Remind yourself of the two P’s when creating the 3 action points below:
The Two P’s
The people (company culture) and the performance (strategy).
The three actions below can be live or can be pre-recorded. Pre-recorded allows you to practise and get it to where you are happy. Powerpoint, Google Slides and Keynote all offer recording and inserting video per slide or across the presentation.
Live is great for connection building, pre-recorded will benefit those of you looking to manage the time and asking for Q&A and being able to prep.
Only you as the leader will know what works best for you and your style (personality type).
Have notes and links to hand to send across post three actions.
1/ Personal Statement
A quick statement of the company, what you are looking forward to seeing, what you are excited for and what behaviours you love to see and are agreed across the business that will likely be rewarded.
Slides will help you here.
FYI: There is nothing more awkward than asking for each member of the leadership to have comments or offer their one minute to ten-minute statement.
2/ Quick Positive Review Of 2021
Here is a breakdown of what to include and flow through:
- A reminder of the journey you went on (timeline)
- What did the team do well?
- What made you proud?
- Any stand out examples of cross-functional collaboration and delivery
- Was there any big campaign, releases or launches?
- Were there important milestones hit and which milestones were hit?
Remove all mad and sad parts of the review, glad (happy and proud) is the most important to concentrate on and start with a micro-moment.
3/ Walkthrough the company-wide strategy for 2022
Here are 4 steps to include and run through quickly. Double click on the elements you were weaker on in 2021 and requires more work. This should be informed from the staff feedback throughout 2021:
- Strategy: What beliefs do you have, what bets are you making and what pillars are going to guide the teams
- Action points ahead: The key sections of work from different departments
- Product roadmap overview: top level don’t go into long details just key points and what you are looking to release or deliver by when (use the think big, act small, by when framework if required)
- Milestones: The milestones you would like to hit and how you are looking forward to the teams developing this out
Remember To Resight Metrics: If you have a number of metrics you have signed off on and agreed upon, share this on one slide presentation or a short image you will share post-presentation / speech, this way you will create a guidepost to allow the company to understand their targets and what they are building towards.
Remember the longer it takes to sign off-targets and north stars the more difficult it is for the teams to hit the ground running and get ahead of the hard tactical battle ahead.
Something to keep in mind, Steve Jobs was the ultimate internal sales and marketing person for Apple and this role is vital for success any year, none more so with such uncertainty people look for leadership with direction and trust signals. Drive this by driving the business forward on day 1.
Best of luck and have a good end to 2021 and a successful 2022.
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