5 Things To Remember As You Prepare For Year-End

7 December, 2017 / Articles
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Whether you’re a social entrepreneur leading a for-profit company or you’re a nonprofit founder, year-end can be a stressful time. It’s the last month to raise funds before a new year begins, and it’s the time to wrap up projects, complete tasks and wipe the slate clean as you prepare for a new year of business.

Amidst the hustle of finishing the year strong, it’s important to prioritize your time and your work with things that will actually advance your organization – and not drain your energy in the process.

Here’s how:

Take time for self-care.

If you’re like most social entrepreneurs, you’ve probably been told to “take time for yourself” countless times. This year, don’t ignore the urge. Go get a massage, go on a long walk, take a weekend trip or go to a coffee shop and read a book for fun. Whatever it is, make sure it energizes your brain and nourishes the soul. Little spurts of TLC will help you stay energized and refreshed, the perfect mindset to finish the year strong.

Make room to reflect.

The best part about ending one year and starting the next is the opportunity to course correct and make changes. This requires reflection. Think about what went well this year and what didn’t, and examine areas ranging from your team, your product, your programs or even your leadership. A new year brings new opportunities. Use the last month of the year to start preparing for changes you want to make. Better yet, bring your team into the conversation. You’ll be surprised by the wealth of knowledge you’ll learn from those you work with. Remember, they hold valuable feedback that could lead to a positive, healthy change in the year to come.

Don’t end the year early.

Just because the year is almost over, it doesn’t mean it’s over yet. If you want to finish a project, launch a product enhancement, or even launch a campaign for funding or awareness, there’s still time. Don’t clock out early, and use every day you have to be productive, efficient and creative. The most successful entrepreneurs put in the extra time to succeed, so use the time when others are checking out to keep your organization moving forward.

Celebrate with your team.

Even as you maximize the time you have left in the year, make sure to carve out space and time for celebration. Not only is celebrating a job well done a motivator for your team, it will continue to solidify and strengthen the bond between you and your colleagues – which will enhance your company culture. Gratitude for a job well done and a year of good teamwork is worthy of celebrating. Take the time to honor your people and have some fun.

Remind yourself it’s about progress, not perfection.

If you’re feeling discouraged about a mistake you made, or what you didn’t accomplish this year, don’t let it get you down. Learn from it, yes, but fixating on disappointment is not productive. Think through the reasons why you didn’t accomplish your goals, and acknowledge the value in simply coming to these conclusions. Then, once you’ve identified what the block was, make a list of how you can do better next year. Whether you identify a lack of communication, resources, or focus, it can all be corrected. Now, focus on the value of the journey and the progress you’ve made. Even if you’ve learned what not to do, it’s still progress nonetheless.

In the midst of the stress, take time to breath and time to reflect. Going into year-end mindfully will help you be productive and accomplish your year-end goals, while still having fun and celebrating with your team.

The science man and innovator, Fernando Fischmann, founder of Crystal Lagoons, recommends this article.

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