Planning next steps? Get personal.

Planning next steps? Get personal.

Why get personal when planning next steps?

As a professional, business leader, or manager you can expect better results when you clearly know your strengths weaknesses, talents and blind spots when planning next steps.
Just like a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) analysis in business planning, effective next steps requires this foundational work to know yourself well.

Jason poo-pooed this effort. What’s with Jason anyway?  

Jason is a manager. He simply sees no reason for self development and no connection between between his traits and his effectiveness. The people who work for him “are professionals and they have a job to do,”  Jason often comments.

With to-do lists out of control, Jason finds he has to jump in and save the day often. Jason wonders how he’ll ever be able to up his game.

Even though we’ve all read the books and know the traps Jason falls into, we can easily fall into traps ourselves.
So here’s what you can do to save yourself.

Get personal

Yes, get personal when planning next steps to up your game.

Know what drives your decisions. The behaviorists  tell us that we spend the bulk of our day reacting subconsciously and 10% of the day being very intentional about it. (See Antonio Damasio, neuroscientist, TED talk). It turns out we perceive the world through our own very personal lenses, measure what we perceive against our values, and then act.

Understand your natural talents.  Yes, those include your strengths. Be aware, just because you want to be talented in something, like communication or delegation, doesn’t mean you have talents in those areas. Figure those out and be crystal clear about what they are. Just like an athlete or musician, accentuate and develop the talents, you will serve yourself best to develop your natural talents.

Assemble other resources around your blind spots.  “But I don’t have any blind spots!” Oh okay. If you say so. The rest us of do have blind spots and weaknesses. Your depth of understanding these determines success and effectiveness as much as understanding strengths and talents.

Accept your behavior pattern preferences.  What? What is that? These are the behaviors that make you feel comfortable in your own skin. You will feel most natural and in control once you do. First step in understanding these preferences is to know them well. After all, others around you do, especially if you lead a team, have a family, or a business. The most insightful around you will spot these patterns quickly.

What do these have to do planning next steps?

If execution and getting results matters to you, then knowing the resources you have to work with matters.
Business leaders need to know what they have to work with also.
Imagine that you…

  • More naturally align with your projects, opportunities.
  • Align with next steps which becomes a natural fit and not forced. The feeling of doing battle starts to diminish.
  • Deal with failures. They naturally become learning steps. Successes flow more smoothly.
  • Tackle challenges and obstacles and they seem less formidable.