As our Executive Coaching series continues, we noticed the calendar is about to change years. How do you really go about planning a great next year?

Where are you standing now? Are you an executive, a team leader, or a senior member of an executive team who needs to know where to look first for what’s next?


“Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?”
“That depends a good deal on where you want to get to,” said the Cat.
“I don’t much care where—” said Alice.
“Then it doesn’t matter which way you go,” said the Cat.
“—so long as I get SOMEWHERE,” Alice added as an explanation.
“Oh, you’re sure to do that,” said the Cat, “if you only walk long enough.”

—Alice in Wonderland
  Lewis Carroll

In the year-end press to get work done, transactions finalized, and loose-ends tied up, it’s easy to miss or neglect something that can make a huge difference in the upcoming year: creating a powerful plan.

Creating a Powerful Plan. Where do you begin?

If you google “planning,” you will get nearly six billion entries! Advice, tips, strategies, techniques. And then there are the established corporate procedures for year-end reviews and planning. And advisors, consultants, and coaches to guide you.

However, there is usually one most crucial and fundamental step that is left out or short-changed. Without it, plans can be acceptable, thoughtful, and yet they lack a certain inspiration and real creativity that can mean the difference between a great year and a mediocre one.

That missing step is completing the past. Before you look to the next year and what you are going to accomplish, look at your past year and get it complete!

Complete (adjective)

having every necessary part or element; entire
ended; finished
perfect in quality or kind

— from

When something is complete, you are no longer concerned with it, you no longer “carry it.”

  • It has moved to the background.
  • It has given you whatever value it held for you.
  • It has no influence on you anymore.
  • You are ready to move on.
  • You are free and unencumbered to create newly.

Planning is a conversation, right?! So have this conversation with your executive team before you turn your eye to what is next: a conversation to complete the past year.

Here are some questions to respond to and guide you and your team:

  1. What did you say you would accomplish this past year? Goals, targets, projects, issues to resolve.
  2. What did you actually accomplish of these?
  3. What did you not accomplish of these?
  4. What else did you accomplish that was not planned?
  5. With respect to what you said you’d accomplish that you did not, what happened? What was missing? What got in the way? What are the corrections going forward? What actions can you put in that would be useful? What actions can you take out that were not productive?
  6. Who should be acknowledged and for what?
  7. Did you forward fulfilling your mission/vision?
  8. Is there anything else to say to be complete with the past year?

OK! Now you have a space in which to create a powerful and inspiring plan!

  • Put this on your calendar with your team.
  • Planning a great next year begins with engaging in these powerful questions.
  • It will be time well spent to begin a productive— and extraordinary— new year.

Ready? Call me at ‭(310) 730-6355 to find out more about Executive Coaching for planning a Great Next Year, and leap before it begins.