It’s less than a month to the new year and now is the time to set yourself up for success next year. That probably seems crazy to you, given that most of us are probably caught in the mad dash of holiday preparations and year-end tasks for work. (16 annual performance reviews, anyone?) But truly, if you want to get a jump on being ready for the new year, set aside a bit of time to reflect and clear the decks.

Studies show that people derive a lot of satisfaction from the anticipation of a positive upcoming event, so it makes sense that there’s an anticipatory element of goal-setting for the new year. But before you move on to what awaits you next year, don’t forget to take a moment to wrap up this year.

One very simple way to take stock is to do a quick inventory of the past year. It doesn’t need to be elaborate and it probably will take about an hour. My colleague Dana Theus has created a four-step ritual that she personally does each year in December.

What I especially love about Dana’s process is that you will take time to give yourself credit for what you have done this year. And most importantly, one of the steps is about letting go of all the stuff that happened this year so that you can move forward. It’s sort of like a “Marie Kondo” of your year. “Want to give your New Year’s hopes and dreams a little boost? Start by putting this year’s stuff to bed so you have a clean slate to start anew when the calendar flips to January,” she writes.

Aren’t your goals (and dreams) worth 60 minutes of your time? Go check out Dana’s process and then let me know what you think!



The Key Interview Question Many Hiring Managers Forget to Ask

November 5, 2019

As a hiring manager, you’ve probably had your share of nightmare interviews. You know, the ones where the candidate clearly is not a fit and you’re wondering how few minutes you can expend before politely showing him or her the door. Then there’s the flip side: the candidate sails in, has the right skills and […]

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Turn Your Responsibilities into Accomplishments to Land that Dream Job

August 19, 2019

My friend Sandra (not her real name) called me up and asked me to review her resume. She was applying for a new job within her organization and hadn’t done the “interview thing” in nearly 10 years. Sandra’s resume showed an impressive series of increased responsibilities and job titles over her decade-long tenure with her […]

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Which Stay Interview Questions Work Best?

July 8, 2019

This sponsored post is shared with you by Dick Finnegan, CEO of C-Suite Analytics and THE Expert on Stay Interviews. An in-demand speaker and top-selling author, Dick travels the world speaking about Trust and Leadership and has authored five books on Employee Engagement and Retention, including The Power of Stay Interviews, which is the top-selling […]

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Are Leaders Who Coach Lazy?

May 22, 2019

As the parent of two teens, I’ve become quite accustomed to The Eye Roll. This ocular straining happens most often when I request a previously agreed upon task be completed by said teen. Me: “Hey, it’s time to empty the trash. Trash pick up is tomorrow.” Teen:  “Ugh,” with a healthy helping of Eye Roll. […]

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People Equation Named Top 25 HR Blog for 2019

May 20, 2019

So here’s a fun tidbit I just learned – BambooHR recently named The People Equation blog a Top 25 HR blog for 2019 in the “management” category. They wrote, “Jennifer V. Miller has centered her career on the people elements of business and excels at breaking down people and their workplace interactions on The People […]

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Lessons from the Farm Book Review

May 8, 2019

I grew up in a farming community along the shores of Lake Michigan in the American Midwest. My grandparents were farmers. And although my folks didn’t farm, I spent a fair amount of time on my Grandpa V’s farm. Especially the summer of my 13th year when my Uncle Myron planted a full ACRE of […]

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Stand Up-Sit Down Meeting Energizer

April 22, 2019

If you’ve ever hosted a day-long meeting or workshop, you know that even the best gatherings sometimes experience a dip in energy.  To reboot the vigor in the conference room, here’s a quick and easy  meeting energizer that helps revitalize people without being too cheesy. It works best with a group of at least ten […]

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How to Avoid Getting Sucked Into Needless Activity

April 15, 2019

There’s no shortage of important work to do – both at home and in your job. So, the last thing you want tossed your way is unnecessary work. Nobody likes needless activity, right? But this is easier said than done. I’m sure you can easily recall getting pulled into something that did not add value […]

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9 Questions to Help Your Team Create Vision

April 9, 2019

Think back to the last project you led. How did you begin? Were you successful getting people on board, or was it more like herding cats challenging than you’d planned? No matter what you’re leading, getting people to line up behind a vision is the first order of business when you take on a new […]

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