Columnists

It’s time for NY resolutions

Regular readers of this space know that I am so very guilty of often making comparisons between the sports world and the business world. So sorry! Maybe it’s the fact that I used to be a sports writer. Maybe it’s because I like sports. Dunno. I think it really has a lot more to do with the fact that winning is sports is so easy to define, and yet in business is sometimes a very gray thing.

You see, all too often in business, we don’t clearly state what is a “win.” In fact, we spend way too much time focusing on things that aren’t that big of a deal and making everyone around feel like we just lost.

With that said, let me offer a few suggestions, five to be exact, to set as your 2022 New Year’s resolutions for work.

1. Tell your direct report exactly what success is. What is the definition of “a win” or success for your employees? Ask them if they know. If they don’t, don’t hold it against them. Educate and train!

2. Educate yourself. Doesn’t matter if you hold a Ph.D., a GED or none of the above, we can always learn more. Take a class at Ivy Tech. Read (there’s this great little management book I can recommend . . .) books and magazines. Go to seminars. Find ways to learn more and broaden your horizons.

3. Make your workplace better. Back to the sports world, Ted Williams was one of the greatest baseball players ever. But the Splendid Splinter never won a World Series championship, despite holding more Major League records than you can shake a stick at. On the other hand, Michael Jordan was a great basketball player who won a bunch of world titles. The difference was that Jordan made those around him better. For sure, baseball is different. But Williams apparently never found a way to do that.

It really doesn’t matter how good you are, find ways to make those around you better and you’ll really be a star.

4. Energize people. My biggest pet peeve in the business world is we spend so much time being negative. We focus on what’s wrong. We spend countless hours upon hours griping about things. And it’s not just business, I’m afraid. Our entire country is racing down that path. I don’t pretend to know the whole answer, but I’m very sure that at least part of it starts with us individually. Be positive and stay positive. It’s way too easy to get off track. Remember this, if you have a garden, it takes constant work to keep weeds from overtaking it. Negativity is the same way. It will take constant work on your part to keep it at bay. It’s worth it though.

5. Set goals. There are very few things more powerful than goals. Take stock of where you are today and decide where you realistically want to be 365 days from now. Then create a plan to get from here to there. Be honest, be realistic and be precise. Set checkmarks along the way every few weeks, every month, every quarter to make sure you are on track. Chart your progress.

Next week: Taking care of customers

Business Playbook is written by Tim Timmons. Timmons’ book, Coaching Success: Creating Champions for the Business World is available at www.tim-timmons.com.