Most people are accustomed to “ringing” in the new year.  We often do it with a lot of fanfare and celebration, including parties, food, and even fireworks.  However, there is another aspect to the transition of the calendar, and that is the opportunity for “Re’ing”. 

No, it’s not a typo, and Yes, it’s a made-up word, but it seems appropriate.  The outset of each year provides a natural time for us all to Re-flect, thinking more intentionally, deeply, and strategically.  It is also a natural time to Re-new, which by definition is to make like new or restore to freshness, vigor, or perfection.

Many people do both of these things at the personal level, but as leaders, it’s important to do it from a leadership perspective as well.  Heading into 2023, many are experiencing challenging economic conditions, dynamic and shifting market forces, talent shortages or constraints, and accelerated change in nearly all aspects of the business environment.  Re-doing, Re-peating, and Re-playing our old ways of doing things will not yield results that are sustainable.  Thus, it is imperative to use the turn of the year to reflect on and renew the business in a future-focused way. 

The list that follows includes six powerful ways to “Re” in the new year:

  1. Re-think – Re-think your core processes (i.e., client service, talent, operations, growth, innovation, etc.).  As you consider the future of your industry, customers, talent, and community, what risks are there in continuing to do things in the way you are now? What might you do to mitigate or overcome these risks? What opportunities exist to use technology or automation to create leverage and efficiencies without impacting quality or results? Challenge existing assumptions and consider what you should stop doing and start doing.
  2. Re-Imagine – Re-imagine how to create compelling value in the role of the office in how work is done.  Work is now done within an ecosystem – remote, onsite, and hybrid – and employees highly value the flexibility inherent in this ecosystem.  How can you configure the ecosystem to provide the best employee, team, and customer experience? How can you re-define the importance of and strike the right balance for onsite presence as a part of that ecosystem for each experience?
  3. Re-Inspire – Re-inspire your people and yourself.  Employee engagement is a critical lever for productivity and results, and engagement is fueled by purpose. Provide clarity of purpose for you and others. Why do you do what you do? What impact do your team members have? How can you communicate the mission and purpose in such a way that it captivates your team?
  4. Re-Discover – Re-discover your value proposition.  In a dynamic environment, value propositions can shift quickly.  Thus, it is important to take a fresh look at what you are delivering and how.  How do your customers experience value in what you do? How are you remaining relevant to their needs? What are you learning about what you need to do to stay relevant in the future?
  5. Re-Create – Re-create social connection.  At the heart of business are human relationships – customer relationships, employee relationships, affiliate relationships, community relationships.  While virtual aspects of our work are certainly here to stay, we need to refocus on how we are cultivating the vital social connections needed to thrive. How can you be more intentional in creating social connection to strengthen relationships? What opportunities are there for greater presence, communication, and caring? How can you ensure you are being more relational than transactional in your interactions?
  6. Re-Charge – Re-charge your batteries and be intentional with what you need to ‘recover’.  We like to say that the “whole” person comes to work, which means we need to be attentive to taking care of the whole person. After periods of exertion, athletes need recovery, and that is the same for “corporate” athletes like you.   What can you do to ensure your own wellbeing? What re-charge activities are important to you that allow for recovery and enable you to bring the best of yourself to the work you do? How can you be proactive to allow for this time in the coming year?

Beyond thinking about these six from your own perspective, you can also use the list to engage with your leadership team and get their reflections and input. 

Regardless of whether you do this on your own or engage others, make the most of this new year by taking time this month to do some “Re’ing”.  It will provide for renewal, help you re-position for the future, and add vigor to your focus to drive results.