How To Set Your Goals During A Pandemic
It is that time of year when we typically start thinking about goal setting, team alignment and engagement and even personal goals or new year resolutions. But these are not typical times, as we are still dealing with the pandemic and tons of uncertainties. Paradoxically, leaders need to maintain a certain level optimism and believe that we will get through these uncertain times while being sensitive to the current undefined terrains. Setting a vision and goals during uncertain times is an art form that is definitely doable. “Line of Sight” is a dynamic process and tool that could help you set your own goals, your team’s, or organization. Here are ten tips to consider:
Realistic Vision: Identify a realistic vision for the year. Even better, come up with ONE thing you would be most proud of accomplishing yourself and as a team given the uncertainty of these times.
Use Range not Target: How will you measure success? We typically set a fixed target for specific metrics, but in the midst of uncertainty, it is more appropriate to provide a range for success instead of a fixed target.
“NOT to Do” List: Develop a list of what NOT to do. During time of resource constraints, it is vital to stop, sunset, or slow down any projects or initiatives that can wait or are not strategic. This needs to be the first thing you do because it is the most difficult and most important.
Maintain Optimism: Optimism increases energy and creativity but needs to be tempered with readiness to encounter the unexpected as we move through 2021. Healthy optimism maintains confidence in our ability to lead and in our team’s ability to collaborate, innovate and execute in the best way possible in response to any challenge or opportunity.
Allow kindness and Flexibility: Allow your team the flexibility to make adjustments based on their knowledge of the terrain, their colleagues, their clients, available resources and the environment. Be kind and encourage your team to actively negotiate goals, targets, and timelines to better align with what has been determined as most important.
Team well-being: Include team and individual well-being as one of the main imperatives. Find ways to get an accurate assessment of your team’s energy reserves and quickly move to address small issues before they become big problems. This includes both team and individual needs.
Revisit Frequently: Plan to reassess your targets at least every 90 days. Be ready to make adjustments to your Line of Sight to ensure that everyone’s energy and all resources are aligned to get maximum value for your efforts.
Focus on 90-day victories: After you’ve set clear goals and ensured alignment of resources, turn your focus to reading the terrain. Initiate open and frequent communication with your team and customers to find improvement opportunities and celebrate near-term victories with your team.
Forgive: Be willing to forgive yourself and team if not everything on the Line of Sight is accomplished. Keep your team focused on fulfilling what is within their control while keeping in mind that we are all human, not machines. Expressing forgiveness toward ourselves and our team is a powerful way to draw people together and to set everyone up for future success.
Celebrate smaller wins. Even when you don’t achieve the full victory you hoped for, don’t miss the opportunity to celebrate smaller wins as the path to greater success in the future. Broaden your measures of success to include how your team works together to address challenges, how your clients benefitted from working with your team, or how the relationships among team members were strengthened.
Working within a paradox of optimism, goal settings while dealing with reality and uncertainty is an art form that is refined over time. Agility and flexibility are key: “strategy is like water, it adjusts and moves with the terrain it finds itself in.” Sun Tzu
For more information about developing a line or sight for you or your team, please contact us at email@example.com.