Prepare for the New Year – Strategies that Activate Growth with Gene Hammett

What a year it has been. Instead of looking back at our mistakes, let’s look at how you can prepare for the new year. Discover three essential elements to being a stronger and more influential leader who can activate growth this year. When you prepare for the new year the right way, you will meet any challenges you face in the new year. You will also get a bonus treat when I share the uncomfortable truth about goals. This one thing will be the one thing that determines if you receive your goals.

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Disclaimer: This transcript was created using YouTube’s translator tool and that may mean that some of the words, grammar, and typos come from a misinterpretation of the video.

Today we look at how to prepare for the new year, we’ve had a heck of a year, I think that this has probably been the hardest year for a lot of entrepreneurs. Because it was so unpredictable. And everything that changed, changed everything. And you as a leader, as an entrepreneurial force inside this world, probably were rocked pretty hard. Maybe you made more money, but you probably had to work harder, you had to really be more intentional about leadership and culture. But as you plan for the new year, you want to make sure that you do it the right way. And I’m going to share with you some of the essentials I’ve seen in businesses that are doing it the right way. But really, this is not just for the business, this is for the leader themselves, this is for you.

If you really want to make the next year, an amazing experience, you want to achieve goals that you’ve never been able to achieve before, if you really want to show up in a different way for not just the company but for yourself and for your family. And today we’re going to go through those essentials, I’m also going to share with you the really uncomfortable truth of goals. It’s one thing that I have seen time and time again, be more important than anything else. And it has nothing to do with smart goals. So I’m going to tell you that at the end, but we’re going to go through planning for the new year. So I have taken a few notes here.

So I may look at them a little bit through this. But I am going to speak from the heart in many places because it’s just the notes are kind of an outline to guide me through this to make sure I don’t miss anything. But I want to make sure you understand that I take this very seriously, within my own life, I want you to take it seriously too. And I want to make sure that you get exactly what you need to prepare for that new year. So let’s kick it off here. By the way, I’m going to give you a worksheet to if you want to get a free worksheet that goes with this, you’ll just be able to go to And you’ll be able to plan for the new year and it’ll give you the right headings and the columns.

To do this, I’m going to try to make it fit on one page. I haven’t actually created it yet. But I’m kind of shooting from the hip here. So I want to give you the support you need. So if you’re listening in here, you want to get the worksheet for the new year, just go to Alright, let’s kick this off. The first thing that I really think that we have to do to plan for the new year is to assess where you are now. And what I mean by that is being able to look back over the year to see how far you’ve come. And a lot of people forget to celebrate all of the accomplishments they’ve had, even my clients that I’m working with, I have to pull it out of them all the things that we’ve accomplished, that big project, sometimes small projects that the places where people have grown, the places where they have grown as leaders. And so I really want to start there is assess where you are now, you may start by looking at the numbers, those numbers are important, the numbers don’t lie, you can look at the profits. You can look at sales, you can look at market shares, whatever the numbers are that relate to your business, and really see how far you’ve come over the last year. And really look at those numbers and see if you can determine what do they mean?

Do they mean that you executed well did that mean that you were able to keep your head up above the water but be proud of wherever you are because it’s been a hard year, there’s been a lot of trying times, and a lot of it is not something that’s very tangible? It’s not something that we can put into numbers. For example, I’ve talked to a lot of leaders like yourself that have just said, You know what, the whole zoom thing back to back, the meetings have just been very efficient in some ways, but also very draining. And the end of the day, they’re just exhausted. And it’s okay. But so those that may not be in the numbers. And that brings us to the second thing, go beyond the numbers, what are the things when you look back are that you can really be proud of around culture, around leadership, around your executive team, around the things that really are something that you have put some energy into, but you can’t measure it as well. And I love to be able to look back at the team and see how they’ve grown. And my team has grown significantly over this last year, not in sheer numbers, although we’ve added some people, but in their ability to support me and support the business as it’s grown.

So go look at the numbers and then go beyond the numbers. And then here’s the hard part. When you’re assessing where you are now you’ve got to identify the truth and you’ve got to identify what’s behind all of this. And I’m gonna give you one example behind this that that really will help you and I call this the team analysis. If you did this with me, you would see an amazing clarity around what’s next for you and your team. And this team analysis is, is really a very simple thing you can do. I’m not sure how it translates and doing it by yourself. But when I do it with clients, it’s very powerful. But we take the org chart, and we look at it. And you don’t have to have names on the org chart, you know who the names are.

When I look at him clients, I don’t even need to know the name. I just ask them some very key questions. The first one is, which team is performing at above average? Which team is, you know, above expectations? And they were able to quickly tell me which team that is. And then we have a conversation around what are the factors that make them perform at that level? And they’re able to tell me very clearly why they’re performing at that level, which is very fantastic to do. And hopefully, you can do the same thing. But then the next step is, what are the teams that are underperforming? What are the leaders? This may be your executive team? could be some other teams that you’re working with? But what are the leaders that just aren’t performing as expected? And the second question behind that is, you know, what’s the missing conversation with that one person that allows you to get to the bottom of it.

Now, this is only one example of finding the truth. But your job is to take everything that you’ve accomplished so far, this year, looking at the numbers, looking at the things beyond the numbers, and determine what the real core issue is that you need to address it put your energy into, for q1, q1 is a fresh start, if you will, but it’s a chance for you to work on the biggest issue inside your business. This is one of the things I do with my clients is to identify what that biggest issue is. And we do that through the coaching conversations, but I’m just sharing with you as much as I can so that you can prepare for the new year.

This org chart thing, when you do it, well will tell you not only who’s performing well, so that you can recognize them because a lot of leaders forget to recognize those people, you know, and give them the recognition they need with their peers and individually. But also, it will allow you to identify the missing conversation with the team leader that needs to step up their game. And that is part of leadership is not avoiding those things, but actually identifying and knowing how to have that conversation. And that’s part of what I do with my clients. But it’s something that I wanted to share with you that you could do on your own. Is it as effective, you’re probably gonna miss a few blind spots inside there?

But I’m trying to give you everything I can here. So once you’ve gone through this, assessing where you are, now, you want to look at the team. Because again, I said this preparing for the new year is not about the business, per se, but it’s about you as a leader, but you as a leader, the team is a reflection of you. And so the first thing you want to do there is to make sure that you’re all aligned together and going in the same direction.

The three most important elements to this, and you’ve heard these before. So this is completely not new to you, I know that. But you want to understand what your mission, vision, and values are. Let’s look at those individually. The mission is what is wrong that you are making right in the world? What is the wrong you are making, right? So if you have a strong mission, if you’re a mission-driven company, it’s very clear to put your words into what you’re doing. And I’ve had clients that have some very, very strong missions that are very clear, some of them are more internal focus their how you’re you’re servicing the clients that you’re serving, is that is specific. But it all works the same when you have a strong mission that everyone has is align together.

The second part behind that is vision. A lot of people have a very weak vision, it’s not very clear. And so you want to make sure that your vision is what will it look like when you get there. And there are about three years out is the term I the space I use, but you want to make sure that you are staying aligned with that. And you are clear what that vision is so that you can communicate that consistently with your team. And you want to make sure your team can communicate it consistently with their team members. And you want to make sure those team members can share consistently with their team members because this is a really big gap. In a lot of leadership. They think they’ve said it once and that’s enough, but it’s not.

You want to make sure it’s clear to everyone it should be clear to your partners, you should even be clear to your customers. Your vision is a very important piece to you, keeping the alignment you need across the team. And then finally the values. A lot of people have to set values they have to really go back and say, Okay, well, here’s what here’s who we are. Here’s who, you know, here’s the values of us is organization is a community of people. But most people have values. So I’m going to jump in and spend most of our time on living the values, how do you live the values? Well, I’m going to put inside that worksheet, a few of the areas that I’ve seen that are often missed in living the values. And I’m not telling you how to do these. But if you wanted to operate, and operationalize your values and live by them, you want to make sure you get these areas covered. And inside that worksheet, you’ll be able to find it again, it’s Gene, forward slash worksheet. So, the mission, vision, and values align together to create a force inside the company, to what we’re doing and where we’re going, and how we’re going to operate. As we get there, talking to a leader the other day said, the values, I just don’t get it, you know, put them on the wall, like, Can we just put our head down and do the work?

Well, the reality behind this is when I study fast-growth companies, and I study a lot of them, you know, I do all these interviews, and it is overwhelming how important the values are on a day to day basis, not a one-time thing, but how they live them every day. And so that’s what I want to leave you with here is really looking at that is how is that the team aligned to the future of this? Alright, so the third one is to create a plan for your own growth. So when you think about achieving the goals that you’ve set for the company, it’s not just about you hitting sales targets, it’s about you growing as a leader, I really believe that you should be identifying how you’re going to grow as a leader and be intentional about that. Just the first step is to decide to be a stronger leader on whatever level you’re at as a leader, you could be a very good leader. But what’s next, and at a client of mine who asked me to come in to do 360-degree feedback. And I was, I wasn’t that surprised about how good of a leader he is. But there was always room for improvement. And we identified that because he knew that get being a stronger leader was very important to take his business over 50 million. So I decide to be a strong leader.

The second piece behind that identifies your leadership blind spots. And again, that same leader, when I asked him what he would expect to hear from the 360-degree feedback, the first thing he said was, I show up to meetings late. Here’s the thing out of nine interviews with his executive team, all the direct reports he had nobody mentioned, he shows up late. Now they did mention he shows up distracted or he shows up not completely present, he does show up. And he tries to make quick decisions. And sometimes you know, pivots very quickly. And it’s kind of detrimental to the company. Sometimes he doesn’t have availability, to schedule for them to have meetings and get approvals and whatnot. And so there’s a whole bunch of blind spots that we uncovered in this.

Now again, he’s already a really good leader, his company is growing really fast. But he wanted to get better. And we did this identifying leadership blind spots, through this 360-degree feedback, I’ll put up some of the key things I put into the questions inside there. And you can actually do that yourself. It’s a little bit harder because I’m not sure how they’re gonna react to you. But when I do it, I feel like I get to the heart of what’s going on. And I’m able to organize that back to the client. But identifying your leadership gaps is the key to understanding how you’re going to do number three, which is to develop your plan.

Developing your plan is about you having a plan to get better as a leader, knowing what skills that you’re going to work on knowing the specific places where you could show up and be even more present, improve your communication, increase your ability to give feedback. Now, you’ll create plans for your growth of you, the leaders, the emergent leaders of your organization, there are so many potential blind spots, that I’m just going to put a few in the worksheet and you get to decide where your blind spots are. And this is a little harder because you’re emotionally attached to the way you’ve done it. Even if you’re a good leader, you have blind spots and I have blind spots and you have blind spots. Even the strongest leaders I know have some blind spots. So how do you you know wrap all this up?

Well, once you understand where you are now and then you can understand what you want to work on and set the goals for the next year and you can see where you’re missing some alignment issues with your team. Very important if you’re trying to scale up faster because not just about you working more hours, putting in getting up earlier, working later. Finding time after dinner, all that stuff. You know, you probably do that. But that’s not going to move the needle as much as getting the people aligned together and being stronger leaders to their leaders, and developing those leadership skills and the capacity to lead. And that’s what we’ve been talking about here today. I told you, I was going to give you a little bonus thing on goals. But there’s an uncomfortable truth to goals. Here’s the thing. Most people think goals are all about smart goals Specific, Measurable, Attainable, relatable time-bound. And that’s an important framework to think about when you’re trying to create your goals. But what I’m noticing is it really is missing some of the key one key element specifically, that you have to be aware of, and that one element is this.

Who do you need to be to receive this goal? And who do you need to be to receive the goal? Do you need to be courageous? Do you need to be more confident? Do you need to be more decisive, you need to be more visionary, you need to be more relentless, you need to be more innovative, and it’s up to you. Only you can answer that question, I asked this to my clients all the time, who do you need to be to receive the goal, I want to explain that what that really means here for just a moment to receive the goal is very different than attaining the goal. Because you have to be convinced inside your mind.

First, that you are worthy of this goal, that you are just gonna go out there and claim it and you show up in a way that’s aligned with that goal, you will receive it, you don’t attain it. And so it’s a very dis big distinction and goal setting, you have to understand is you receive it, you don’t obtain it, you don’t set a target and you show up today, it’s kind of like that whole adage, you dress for the job you want, not for the job you have. And what that means is, you know, if your job is to move into executive when you were young, you dressed as an executive would. And then you would be seen as an executive, same thing and goals. Who do you need to be to receive this goal? This is the biggest question. If you continuously ask yourself that every day, you will be more likely to hit your goal, then all of the other stuff, because you will, you will do those other things. But this will lead the way. It really is about your level of confidence in yourself, and how you’re showing up each and every day. When you go through this, you will have a lot of opportunities to grow as a leader, and you will, you know maybe even have some questions.

If you want to have a conversation with me, I’d love for you just to go to a simple URL. So you can schedule time with me cost you absolutely nothing. But if you want to be a stronger leader, more visionary, more influential than just going to, which will help you about creating the kind of momentum you need the clarity and confidence in yourself to be the leader that your team deserves. And I work with fast growth leaders all the time, most of my clients are on the Inc 5000. In fact, all of them are right now. When I think about you, as a leader, I want you to think about who do you need to be to receive that goal.

So that you receive it you show up intentionally consistently every day, you show up with clarity and confidence in yourself that you deserve that goal. There is no cracks in the armor, the foundation is strong as ever. And that will be what helps you get to that goal. I’m going to wrap up today’s message today because I don’t want this to be too long. But when you’re preparing for the new year, if you walk through these plans, if you go through these worksheets, and you really do the work. I’d love to see your progress over time. I love to see how you’re really making a difference with them. Send me your worksheets, send me your questions. I’d love to help you if you want to apply for that conversation to get to the heart of it very quickly. This is what I do. We’re gonna wrap up today’s episode with this one message. Remember, it’s not what you do, it’s who you are. That makes you a leader. It’s not what you do. It’s who you are.

So the key question again, who do you need to be to receive this goal? This wraps up preparations for the new year. I love for you to let me know how it’s helping you and impacting you. If you have any questions. Make sure you just go ahead and go to or send me an email [email protected] when you think of growth and you think Leadership thinks of Growth Think Tank. As always lead with courage.

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Disclaimer: This transcript was created using YouTube’s translator tool and that may mean that some of the words, grammar, and typos come from a misinterpretation of the video.


Prepare for the New Year



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