Metrics for success: Making 2020 your best year yet

“One way to keep momentum going is to have constantly greater goals.” - Michael Korda

Often, we set business goals as soon as the new year commences but these can quickly be led in a different direction due to several external factors that are out of our control. With 2020 starting off with the country’s worst bushfire season on record, affecting a huge number of businesses and the outbreak of the deadly coronavirus spreading globally, businesses may be needing to reassess their key priorities sooner in the year than expected.

2019: A Momentous Year

In almost every sense of the word, 2019 was a momentous year to say the least. What with geo-political pressures rising alongside global temperatures, there was plenty to keep blood pressure running high throughout the year.

Still, the ASX and global markets showcased not just resilience, but significant growth that’s provided a worldwide boom to both modern and developing economies.

With the last decade now behind us, we wanted to approach 2020 deliberately, creating areas for growth, improvement and reflection.

As we take stock of 2019 and continue to usher in 2020, we recommend pausing once again and taking a moment to reflect on the progress made, while setting clear intentions and goals for the new year and decade ahead for the business.

Take Time to Reflect

Compelling research cited by the Harvard Business Review actually shows that taking time for brief daily reflection (15 minutes as showcased in this case study) can improve your performance by up to 23%.

The Harvard Business Review describes the power of reflection, both in business and personal endeavors, by detailing the following:

Reflection gives the brain an opportunity to pause amidst the chaos, untangle and sort through observations and experiences, consider multiple possible interpretations, and create meaning. This meaning becomes learning, which can then inform future mindsets and actions. For leaders, this “meaning making” is crucial to their ongoing growth and development.

We’re not recommending that you immediately devote yourself as a monk and move to the nearest mountaintop for endless reflection. Instead, we recommend reflection as a technique to enhance your cognition and decision making, performed daily, but at your convenience.

So, now we’ve all had some time to ease into the year and take a step back after an eventful start to 2020, it’s important to carve out some time to reflect on 2019 while setting and rethinking your business goals for 2020.

Here are a few simple ways you can get started:

Select a method of reflection that works best for you

This could be personal such as hiking, running, meditation or taking notes in your journal. It could be getting your colleagues together, in your team or in the wider organisation and discussing the best and worst approaches of 2019. There are heaps of ways to process information and reflect, so finding one that fits your lifestyle and business structure will set you up for success when reflecting for the rest of the year.

Consider a ‘Great & Hate’ List

What gave you the most difficulty in 2019? Is there any way you can improve upon this or leave it behind? On the other hand, what was a moment of triumph that you already cherish? People tend to remember bad things in the short-term and good things in the long-term, so be sure to account for recent wins in your assessment of the previous year that you can implement into the business for 2020.

Making Strides/Areas for Improvement

What skill or achievement showcased the most impactful improvement for the business in 2019? Conversely, where did you and the business lack improvement? Make sure your goals for 2020 address these areas specifically, in ways that you can tackle productively and effectively.

Goal Setting

Taking small steps toward your goals, when completed ritually, can have incredible implications when compounded over time. Think about exercising 20 minutes a day or saving an additional $100 AUD per week. These are small victories, that over time, can achieve remarkable things.

When gearing up for the year ahead, set the right goals which properly accommodate daily wins, and soon enough, you’ll be looking back at a remarkably successful 2020.