Episode 15: Celebrating 2021

It’s almost time for the new year, but if you wait until all the headlines start talking about new year’s resolutions, your team will be checked out and you’ll miss your window of opportunity.

How can you celebrate surviving — and hopefully thriving — in 2021 with your team as you wrap up the year?


My Year-End Retreat Plan

As you wrap up 2021, here is the plan I use to complete as a reflection on your accomplishments this year:


Full Episode 15 Transcript

It’s almost time for the new year. But if you wait until all the headlines start talking about new year’s resolutions, your team will be checked out and you’ll miss your window of opportunity to celebrate how can you celebrate surviving and hopefully thriving in 2021 with your team as you wrap up the new year all that and more on episode 15 of the New Generation Leader podcast, Welcome to the New Generation Leader. We’re giving you the tools you need to lead in the digital world, ready to reach your true potential.

Let’s get started. Welcome to the new Generation Leader podcast. Mm I always enjoy this time of the year and not just for the holiday season that we’re in and the celebrations that we get to have with family, with friends as we round the corner and head towards the new year. What I really love about this time of year is that it’s a great opportunity to look back at this year, but also an opportunity for a fresh start in the new year. I’ll include in my show notes today, this guide that I have created my personal exercise of looking at the year in review, but I want to take a bigger level and focus on your team today.

What are you doing with your team to celebrate all this started with a coaching client in a conversation we had this morning and off the cuff. I said, what does the end of the year look like for your team? How are you celebrating? How are you closing out? What this year has meant, What it’s been the results that you’ve accomplished together And we talked through that. And so coming out of that conversation, I want to throw out a few ideas to you as you consider how you reflect together with your team on the year, no matter what you do, no matter what the guidelines and restrictions are that your team is currently living with and abiding by all of these are opportunities that you can use to creatively bring about a sense of celebration wrapping up the year.

So I want to start off number one and asking each member of the team to pause themselves and reflect on what they have accomplished this year. What are they most proud of in their work together collaboratively as a team. But what is their proudest moment and having a conversation hearing from each person what they are excited about, grateful about proud of accomplishing and working together is a great conversation to have. It can be opened up a great dialogue and reflection together and that’s kind of the story side of this celebration.

From a leadership perspective, you can look at a macro level and make sure your team highlights and spend some time in a town hall of video format, a blog post, an email, something that’s heartfelt specific and points out the unique contributions that the team has made throughout this year? Maybe it’s been a challenging year and you need to highlight how they have transcended all of these challenges to work together to accomplish things, even in the midst of extreme stress chaos. Maybe you’ve been wrestling with the global supply chain, Maybe you are in health care and you’ve been dealing with the ramifications of the coronavirus, Maybe you’re in education and you have all sorts of new restrictions that you’ve been coming up against whatever it is as a leader, take your own personal viewpoint, your own proudest moments from the team and make sure you share those, Make sure you convey those before the year ends.

Well then we think about all of the holidays celebrations year in, no matter what season of this month. Really, the six weeks from thanksgiving to christmas cover a lot of holidays? From thanksgiving to Hanukkah, christmas, Kwanza, uh, Boxing day, If you’re a Canadian and all the way through the new year, all of those bring about celebrations that we have through this holiday season. So as you think back to how you celebrated in 2019 probably the last time we had some semblance of normal human interaction around these holiday celebrations.

Think about what you’re going to do what you’re able to do this year. And if you can’t do the big holiday bash party that you normally do, what can you do? What can you creatively bring? Is it a food truck? Is it boxed lunches? Is it some other way one client talked about having a bonus even before the holidays, Just a simple, tangible monetary contribution because they weren’t going to spend that on a holiday gathering. So let’s preemptively give that to folks and make sure they have an opportunity to celebrate in their way themselves.

Maybe you do have a chance to have a holiday meal. Maybe the holiday gift exchange isn’t in one room, but everybody has a secret santa. Uh, the faculty that I’ve been working with this semester is having the secret santa and a meal though by zoom but everybody will be gathered together and have some level of interactive component. Maybe you bring a food truck out to your business office location, let them set up shop. Everything’s on the bill of the company, but everybody gets a chance to have a good meal celebrate together reflects come and go and not be all together in one crowd, but abide by the restrictions that you have in front of you.

Some of you will have those end of year bonuses and it’s time to communicate and share those and hand those out, distribute those to your team members. And how can you make that more personal this year? How can you include some measure of well done specific message to the person when when I lead workshops on gratitude, Generosity, acknowledging and appreciating team members in the workforce. One of the things that we talk about most often is how do you make this specific to the individual one organization I worked with previously had an annual bonus structure and every year the leader of the organization stood up at the holiday lunch, shared a message to the whole group and said congratulations, we’ve got the bonus again this year.

And, and it was usually fairly general. It was not very specific to each individual and it was universal across the entire company. So what can you do to make this more personal if your organization is really large? One leader owner, president executive can’t do that for everyone. So how can you invite other leaders in your organization to make this specific? Make it personal and celebrate as we’re coming to the year end, Whether you’re having a party or you’re having a bonus or you’re having some other creative way.

This is a really good time of year as well to be generous to show generosity and to give back one of the organizations that I’ve worked with on staff and now as a member of one of their boards, they have a christmas event specifically for fathers and I was with a team yesterday and that team as an announcement said, Hey, just a reminder, we’re participating in this event to celebrate dads who have been nominated. We’re raising money. We’re collecting items. We’re going to bless and celebrate these dads, not just the dad, but their kids and the entire family giving them a little something extra after what’s been a hard year.

That’s the construct of this. This organization is christmas event and that’s a great opportunity for your team to come together around a common cause, a common goal, a common service opportunity in this season and it’s a great opportunity to give back to celebrate and bless those around us. Maybe it’s as simple as handing out a $5 bill or a $10 bill to each of your team members and encouraging them to go buy a gift card for somebody, just a gift card and hand it whether it’s to the person behind them in the line at the grocery store or paying for the meal of the person behind them in the drive through.

How can we share that festive, joy filled community spirit with all of those around us as we round out this year, Let’s share that celebration together, Let’s be in this together. So as you round out the year with your team, I hope you will take an opportunity to truly celebrate value and appreciate every single team member who has spent part of this year with you through the highs and the lows pinpoint what it is. Those team members have contributed, help them to celebrate and reflect and be grateful Together.

It has been an incredible year, a new year is coming, but don’t lose sight of what has happened this year as we get ready to welcome in a new year. There are show notes at new generation leader dot com slash 15 Again, you can download my resource guide on having a personal time of reflection over this past year as you begin to prepare for what’s coming in 2022. That’s a great guide and I’m glad I did today’s podcast episode on this subject because I need to schedule my time over the next few weeks to have my own personal reflection.

It’s one of my favorite days of the year. So thanks for tuning in today. Make sure you download the show notes at NewGenerationLeader.com/15 and we’ll see you back here next time.

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