End of Financial Year – Time for an audit

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As they say, poor planning leads to poor results. As it is important for every business to take time, at least once a year, to assess performance, review goals, make plans and allocate resources it is important for us, as individuals to do the same. Although many of us, in fact, 74% of us think we are in the wrong job and 49% of us think we will change jobs in the next 12 months, most of us do not think about our careers regularly and very few of us actually take the time to write a career plan.

So, as we move towards performance appraisal time find yourself a quiet corner and let’s conduct your Career Review and Action Plan. In other words, your career audit.

Audits can only be effective if they are holistic, honest and transparent. When assessing yourself and your performance be honest in your assessment. You are the only one that needs to see this, however, it always helps to get feedback from trusted friends or colleagues.

Some thought starters to answer:

The year in review:

1. If you had set goals for the previous year, did you achieve them or not? What were the obstacles, what were the successes? What role did you play in your success or failure? If you did not achieve your goals, before jumping to blame others, consider what you did, or did not do, to impact the situation.

2. Have you delivered value and service to others this year? How? When?

3. How would you rate the quality of your performance – did you do your best? How often did you do your best? Did you continuously try to learn and improve?

4. What was the quantity of your performance – did you put in? Did you go over and above or did you take the easy way?

5. What was your attitude like? Were you collaborative, a team player, easy to work with? Do people want you on their team?

6. Did you procrastinate and avoid taking action or making decisions? Have you been indecisive? Why?

7. Have you been persistent and tenacious in achieving your goals or did you give up at the first obstacle?

8. Did you let your fears stop you from moving forward? Were you over cautious?

9. How would you rate your relationships? Did you strengthen or weaken them with your behaviour and attitude? What can you do to improve your relationships?

10. Have you been open-minded and tolerant when listening to others?

11. Did you let your ego, your fears or your ignorance affect your performance or relationship with others? What could you change in your approach?

12. Are you self-aware? Are you aware of and do you accept your areas of development? What effort are you willing to make to develop these areas?

13. Have you allocated the right resources to achieve your goals – time, money, effort?

14. How much time have you allowed time for planning?

15. Are your employees, manager and peers happy with you?

16. What would you pay for your own services?

The future:

1. What are your goals and objectives for the following 6 or 12 months?

2. Why are these goals important? What is your “why” or your “purpose”?

3. What are your learnings and development areas from the previous year?

4. How realistic are these goals?

5. What resources are you willing to commit – time, effort, money – to achieve these goals?

6. What gaps in knowledge or experience do you have? What action do you need to take to fill these gaps in knowledge? Whom do you need to speak to and engage with?

7. What is your action plan? What actions will you take and when?

8. How will you feel when you achieve these goals.

If you were running a marathon, you wouldn’t just turn up after a few runs and expect to win the race. Your career is no different. Achieving your career goals takes a plan and effort. Take the time to assess yourself, your skills and your performance objectively to ensure you have a plan to achieve your goals. Now get planning.