2013 will be our year! How?
December 31, 2012 1:32 PM   Subscribe

2013 will be our year! ...But how? Have you had a storybook year or season at work or school or in a club? Something that felt like a Lifetime movie, making it to regionals for the first time for choir, or smashing your sales goal for the quarter, or collecting a ton of stuff for your canned food drive? I am trying to figure out what factors influence extraordinary success in a team setting.

Obviously, lots of stuff is situational - what the members are like, what the economy is like, things that are not under our control. I'm looking instead for things that I can replicate - especially habits or strategies that I as the leader can adopt to help keep my team motivated and productive.

If it helps, I lead a department within a radio station that sees a huge number of members burning out. The work can be extremely rewarding but is always exhausting, and I also struggle because it's hard to figure out how to set goals that help me measure how we're doing.

However, no worries if you don't have advice for my specific situation. I'm looking for observations you've made of what went right for you and your team, that I can then generalize to figure out things to try in this next year!
posted by estlin to Human Relations (4 answers total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
This might not be what you want to hear, but I don't think these things happen in one year.

I had a really shitty 2011, did a lot of groundwork in 2012, and as a result there's a chance some really good things might happen for me and people I work with in late 2013 or early 2014. I think the "great year" tends to be the payoff for a bunch of hard work the year(s) before.

But maybe that's not really what you're asking? All I can say about what influences success is, the combination of good people with a feeling of camaraderie, and the feeling that exceptional work will be rewarded. An atmosphere of collaboration and not competition against each other.
posted by drjimmy11 at 1:47 PM on December 31, 2012

A good year is one where you are ready to catch the breaks if they come. If they come, it's a great year.
posted by titanium_geek at 10:47 PM on December 31, 2012

The reason that you aren't successful is because you don't know how to measure your success. What you need is your goals to be SMART.

Specific- "Have X many listeners over a three week period." "Keep ratings over X% for blah blah blah." "Retain X% of staff from month to month." I don't know what makes sense for you, but you need to find a goal.
Measurable- "Play good music." or "Be a station people like" are not measurable.
Attainable- Don't choose something that depends on the work of other people. If it's the hands of another department, it's not your goal. Choose something that your department works on/ you have control of.
Realistic- You can't expect to go from zero listeners to #1. Be ambitious, but realistic.
Time bound- Goals are a dream with a date attached. You will never attain it if you don't know when it needs to be finished by.
posted by raccoon409 at 8:50 AM on January 1, 2013

Response by poster: thanks for the suggestions, raccoon409. I agree that figuring out realistic, measurable goals HAS to be our first priority. And drjimmy11, I'm realizing as I'm rereading this question that it's basically "what is the secret to success?", which is obviously unanswerable. Definitely not a good AskMe, but I appreciate you guys for chiming in, and I may figure out some better variants of this question in the future. Happy New Year!
posted by estlin at 9:10 PM on January 1, 2013

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