Jobs for November: Review, Regroup, and Plan for 2020
It’s November, and your office is full of the buzz and bustle associated with end-of-year projects, festive planning and seasonal parties.
On top of regular day-to-day work, the fourth quarter is a pivotal time. It’s when companies are working hard to complete projects or deals before clients and suppliers disappear for the festive period. It’s also time to start planning for next year, to make sure your team starts 2020 with the right mindset and fresh objectives.
All in all, November is a tricky time of year and it’s easy to lose focus.
Our advice is to set aside some planning time - perhaps a morning every week in the run-up to Christmas - and get everyone together in a meeting room. That way, you’re in a quiet focused environment away from the distractions of ringing phones or pinging emails.
Tasks To Do Now
Your first planning sessions should focus on collecting feedback from the past year.
Use this time to seek input from your team and review past performance, such as marketing campaigns and sales targets, and what support you expect you will need to help you meet (and exceed) next year’s targets.
Consider the challenges you experienced over the past 12 months and brainstorm ideas to prevent similar issues in the year ahead.
For instance, let’s say your online orders were disappointingly low. Is your website user-friendly enough for your customers’ requirements? Can it handle bespoke orders? If not, do you offer enough ways to contact you? Have you considered installing a live chat system to help prospective clients contact you faster?
Once you have feedback and ideas, align these with your company’s objectives and budget, and consider which areas of your business needs the most support in 2020 to meet your targets.
November is a time to “get everyone on the same page”, says Andrew Filev, CEO and founder of the collaborative project management system Wrike. “Once goals are set, you need to communicate them,” he advises.
This is the time to prepare your team so they know what they’ll be accountable for. “If you’ll need to train or retrain any staff, start designing those programs in November. If you’re planning a kick-off event, start getting those pieces in place before the holidays hit.”
The key thing is to communicate with everyone to ensure they’re already thinking ahead. It might seem early, but there’s really no time like the present to plant the seeds for 2020.
“Just remember that between ideation, research, collaboration, and communicating across teams, it takes time to do it right.”
And if you’re planning a special end-of-year event for your team, get this booked in as soon as possible.
What To Do In December
Before the holidays take over, between finishing up tasks and tying up loose ends, use December to reflect on the past year and celebrate your team’s achievements.
Consider how you can learn from mistakes and challenges from the past year, and how you can use these lessons to avoid similar issues in the coming year.
In addition to company objectives and targets, this is also a great time to agree on personal goals with each team member.
Perhaps they want to learn or refresh certain skills, gain a qualification, or step outside of their comfort zone and do something completely new - such as giving a presentation or running a workshop. December is a good time to start these discussions, and then schedule one-to-one meetings in January to review ideas and set personal objectives for the year ahead.
Whether you are planning a team meeting, a company-wide review, or a one-to-one, be sure to book out a meeting room to help keep your discussions focused and on-topic.
At UBC, you’ll find a range of meeting rooms that are fully equipped for business meetings, large or small. We can also provide specialist equipment if needed, along with catering options for longer planning sessions. Book a meeting space today and kick off your 2020 plans the right way.