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Say ‘no’ to resolutions and ‘yes’ to blueprinting your business. Here’s why …

Resolutions are often unrealistic, pressure filled promises that if broken, can make you feel like a failure. That is the last thing your business needs.

What are you going to do if you break them in January for whatever reason? Wait a whole year to begin again? Resolutions are unrealistic, especially in terms of business, because often they’re emotionally led and not a concrete plan. I’ve no time for them. I’m more of a blueprint woman.

Would you ever say wildly: I’m going to do XYZ and that be it?

No of course not. You’d formulate a plan. And that’s what the start of the new year needs. For this article’s sake I’m calling it blueprinting, you can market it to your team as a strategy session. Do it now, or at your company’s year end, as long as you make sure you do it though – that’s the vital thing.

But a company blueprint, well now you’re talking the language of success. Whilst a blueprint may involve a week or indeed the entirety of January to compose, an all encompassing script of where you want your company to be with milestones to achieve in order to realise your goals is utterly essential. It’s there to be adhered to where possible, altered when needed, but always worked towards. Everyone in the company can identify with it because it’s clearly laid out and communicated in a matter of fact way and they can see how their role within the company benefits it.

A clear vision of leadership has to be apparent within the company structure to be able to action this, however it’s worth its weight in gold when focusing teams initially and throughout the year. 

Time for the C-levels to lead and inspire

Creation of the blueprint requires the decision makers of the company to come together, strategise, debate and analyse the company goals. Within this time any data from past campaigns or years of trade need to be considered and of course the budget to implement the goals needs to be realistic.

If they are not present at the strategising session, line managers then need to have a separate meeting with the decision makers to brief them fully on the planned intentions of the business. Questions can be asked and key team members chosen to implement the plan. 

Throughout the course of the year, the blueprint can be referred back to when asking questions of the business and ensuring that decisions are aligned with the goals. Successes within each sector of the business can then be ticked off when they’re achieved. 

This level of clarity is far greater than any resolution. Resolutions are statements but the real reason that many of them don’t come into fruition is that they’re not backed up with a solid plan of action.

Instead of resolutions, is a mantra enough?

Whilst potentially giving inspiration for a second, an employee dealing with a complex decision needs more focus than a sentence; they need a reason, an outcome to work towards. So instead of insisting that your staff members’ simply follow a mantra when making their decisions which can be lost in the every day business of being in business, a blueprint reaffirms the reasons behind their decision making process and why they need to action their role in order to ensure that the overall company is performing. It creates accountability and opens up the opportunity for them to fine tune their processes of work to enable them to add specific value to the respective company’s bottom line. Ergo leaders have a cleaner and clearer means of tracking attitudes and flagging up issues within their teams, if their communication methods are in place of course.

What about resolutions in terms of measuring your own performance?

Now this is the element where I do think that resolutions, in terms of personal growth have their place. In a business sense, asking each team member to create resolutions about their performance can be focusing and pertinent to each person. All that is needed is two hours to focus in on the task which needs to then be reviewed with the line manager. Ideas for personal staffing resolutions could include any, or more, of the following: 

Being more punctual
Communicating well with all team members
Meeting deadlines and being early for them if at all possible
Speaking up more in meetings
Focusing on training for new or more deeply developed skillsets Supporting local businesses when stock or services are needed Supporting local charities
Contacting customers to check-in on a more regular basis
Making more eco-friendly choices within the business

The list can go on, however, you get the gist. All of these aspects will ensure that each individual team member performs to a higher personal standard reflecting in both their pride and the success of the business rising.

Create your company blueprint for 2022 and place it on the wall. List a mantra next to it that reflects the level of hard work and success you wish your team to have and have a prosperous and focused new year.

Cherry Martin

Cherry is Associate Editor of Business Matters with responsibility for planning and writing future features, interviews and more in-depth pieces for what is now the UK’s largest print and online source of current business news.