My company’s financial year end coincides with the calendar year end.  So at this time, besides all the preparations for Christmas and the New Year festivities, I am also doing all those year end round up tasks to close one year and prepare for the next.  It is a great opportunity to reflect on what has been and look forward to what will come and where the business is heading.

I enjoy this time, when we can look forward to what the new year will bring and what we are planning to do through the next twelve months.  It is a great opportunity to review what worked, what didn’t work, what we can celebrate and what we can learn.

Of course I am constantly reviewing my work and the projects and contracts that I’ve taken on with clients (I use David Allen’s “Getting Things Done” methodology to keep me organised and on track), but the year end is somewhat special.  It is a great opportunity to list what the successes and the learnings from the past 12 months have been, how they affected your performance and highlight just a few things that you want to work on in the coming months.

So that I don’t lose track of what I’ve decided to work on, I include these few items in my business strategy and make time to work on them during my working week.  It might all sound a bit obvious and unnecessary, but we work in a highly pressured and always under-resourced sector.  Working on your organisation (and yourself) is as important as working in an organisation (or for yourself in my case).  We talk so much about planning and strategy and including stakeholders and beneficiaries that sometimes we forget to include ourselves in our plans.

Keeping your own skills, experience and work-life balance in check is as important as delivering your projects.  So as we get together over the festive season, take some time to think about what you will be working on for yourself next year, then get on and do it!


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