Managing your playoffs

One of the key points in my life has always been the end of the year.  The week between Christmas and New York is all down time.  Time for renewal!  Time for reflection!   This time is spent reviewing the past year.  Did I meet the goals that I had set?  If not why not? Meanwhile before I start this process, I pretty much know where I am.  The reason for this “confidence” is that every quarter, I go through sort of the same process to get a sense of where I am.

This is also the time of the year that football season comes to an end.  I have always marveled at the closure of the season from an organizational prospective.  Here’s why.  

When the season ends the entire year gets reviewed.  Every aspect of the team performance is put under the microscope.  The teams that did not make the playoffs could as a result get their coaches fired.  The teams that make the playoff are for the most part satisfied with their results and enter the playoffs feeling a little confident.  

If your career were in charge of you, so many would be fired.  The reason would be that we have neglected it.  The career did not progress from the previous year.  There was no real plan in place.  There were no measurable metrics.  There was no promotion.  Game plan (resume or business plan) is never up to date.  This list can go on and on. 

I tend to think of how our work life would progress if we used the same model as the NFL.  We begin the year with certain metrics in mind.  You noticed that I did not say resolutions.  We have certain milestones in place which serve as a check points.  This could be every quarter.  Our game plan was up to date.  We had created SMART goals.  We managed our plan every week, every quarter.  We had a thorough review and made adjustments accordingly. 

  • Are we on target? 
  • Are we heading in the right directions? 
  • What adjustments are needed? 
  • Will these adjustments put us on target and in the right direction?

 These are all questions that should be in your lexicon and should be a part of your self-analysis each and every year. 

Sadly this is a pipe dream in so many lives.  We talk the talk but do not walk the walk.

The NFL playoffs takes up more time in lives than our career could only hope for.  Your career would love to have this amount of attention just once per year.   With all the games leading up to the super bowl there is a laser focus on a single entity.

As we proceed into this New Year, give this a thought and just imagine that just for one weekend per quarter you could change the trajectory of your career and life.

If your favorite team made the playoffs and you are cheering them along chances are they went through a rigorous process to get there.  

Why not get your plan in place; hey you just might make your own playoffs by next year this time.

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