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Never mind resolutions, what one thing would make a big difference…

…to your work or to your senior executive job hunt?

As some of you know, I’ve written a few times in the past about New Year’s Resolutions. For example:

  • Keeping to your resolutions
  • Resolutions, goals, happiness and engagement
  • This year, my inbox seems to have been full of messages from coaches with suggestions for my New Years’ Resolutions. I’m sure that some of them are very sound – though, of course, as coaches they probably shouldn’t be offering advice!

    However, we live in complex times, with much changing globally around us every day it seems. So, I wonder how relevant New Year’s Resolutions will be this year? Of course, some will always be, but those related to our work may be more critical – more like “urgent and important” tasks on our never ending to-do list.

    One of my ‘confidant’ clients ( decided to use our last session of this year as a strategic review. She went over the things she’d planned to do throughout the year and identified a handful that hadn’t happened. She then reviewed whether they were still relevant. Finally, she was left with a couple that seemed as important now as then. Rather than say she’d tackle them both, she acknowledged that they’d been around for 12 months and nothing had happened, and committed to deal with one in the quiet period between Xmas and the New Year.

    This set me wondering what one thing I could do to dramatically improve my own business activities next year?

    I have just been made very aware of my own shortcomings on the financial management side of my business. So, the one thing that I am very clear I need to embrace next year is proper management of my finances – not just projecting the income streams (I actually do that aspect of the business plan bit quite religiously each March) but far more precise tracking and recording of information, and thinking through the consequences of different aspects.

    In the past, I’d have dismissed this as something that would never make a big difference. However, Anthony Mellor has helped me see some of the many errors of my ways this last fortnight. In a way, I’m resolving to do things better next year, but it is also one big thing that could make all the difference.

    QUESTION: So, if you lead an enterprise, in whatever form, ask yourself what are your ‘blind-spots’ and see if there isn’t something you could do that would make a BIG difference.

    I’ve noticed that the people who tell me that the employment scene, especially for senior executives, is ‘good’ are the ones who are in work and have been more-or-less continuously for the last four or five years. In my work with Executive-Post, I’d beg to differ. Some of my clients were on sky-rocketing career paths, were made redundant, and have been looking for over 6 months. It’s easy to get dispirited and one of the things I try to do is maintain their enthusiasm over the Christmas and New Year period.

    One of my clients let me know on Christmas eve that he’d had a successful job interview and is going in for a final one, this time with the ultimate decision maker, in the first week of January. He’s been out of work for quite a while and I know it is going to make a world of difference.

    What happened to bring about this sudden bit of good ‘luck’? Well, early in December, we agreed that he’d spend the month going back over the networking contacts he’d had over the last couple of years and pick up the thread with those he’d dropped. Among these were people who he’d been interviewed by but had never followed up with when he didn’t get a job offer. One of the first he tried came straight back with: “I am so glad you’ve got in touch. Yes, there is a job going – and actually, it would probably suit you perfectly. Why don’t you pop in for a chat?” Two meetings later and he is into negotiating.

    So, my suggestion to anyone on their senior executive job hunt would be… go back over your diary for the last 18 months, see who you have not had any proper contact with, and ask them for a coffee. Fill up your diary for January now. Doing this one thing could make a big difference.

    Do me a favour… Add a note to this article and inspire someone else – let us know what you’re planning on doing and even let us know when you have!

    Graham Wilson – 07785 222380 |

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