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New year resolutions to leadership challenges

New year resolutions? Two minute read about business performance coaching themes raised by Heads of Department across a whole range of organisations during 2015/16.

Psychological empowerment to bolster self-confidence

Facilitating positive change. Greater resilience in role. Energy to confront and take action rather than begrudgingly accepting an unsatisfactory status quo.

(Raised 67 times)

Prioritisation of effort plus self-organisation

Planning ahead for active and positive contribution at well-structured and properly engaging meetings so that colleagues want to attend. Setting even clearer goals/specific outcomes for all tasks and projects. Tangible improvement of time management skills and self-organisation for greater reliability. This means consistent timely delivery/completion of tasks plus elimination of procrastination.

(Raised 56 times)

Job security

Adding greater value. Greater focus on what really makes a difference to the business. Increasing profitability and sustainability for business and self.

(Raised 36 times)

Bolder decision taking

Identifying and implementing own solutions to stubborn problems. Taking positive action instead of habitual referral to the time-pressed CEO.

(Raised 33 times)

Self-awareness of impact on others

Appreciation of a choice of effective decision taking processes. Avoidance of being perceived as a naysayer or blocker to progress.

(Raised 23 times)

Long-term planning/strategic thinking

Fostering healthy relationships. Valuable feedback on own style and ‘behaviours’. Need for setting own set of relevant KPIs to supplement guidance provided in annual appraisal. Visionary thinking. Developing key messages plus how and when to use them. Broader long-term thinking beyond day-to-day action to positively impact on department/whole organisation. Effective networking. Walking about more to keep ear to the ground.

(Raised 23 times)

Mergers and acquisitions

Alignment of tactics for securing the best deal. Different approaches to negotiation.

(Raised 22 times)

Controlling moodiness

Improved coping mechanisms. Less emotional. Anger management. Less stomping.

(Raised 21 times)

Advanced communication skills plus negotiation

Eliminating the distractions of ambiguity. Understanding the subtleties of spoken and written communications to help gain buy-in to ideas quicker. Avoidance of being rolled over. Active listening skills. Body language. Emotional intelligence.

(Raised 19 times)

Stress and over-worrying

Greater focus during the working day. Sleeping deeper and for longer.

(Raised 17 times)

Team-working, delegation plus provision of direct honest feedback

Empowerment. Fair and appropriate allocation of tasks. Easing pressure. Whole life development of team to get the best from limited resources.

(Raised 15 times)

Leadership skills

Building trust and respect. Situational leadership. Authentic leadership. Intent-based leadership. Budgeting, monitoring and more risk taking within boundaries.

(Raised 13 times)


Appropriately resourcing team. Recruitment and retention of productive staff.

Getting the numbers right. Active empowerment of whole team. Bringing on high performers for highest ROI. Developing skills of the underperformers - or give them the confidence to move on to new challenges elsewhere.

(Raised 9 times)

Keeping fit and healthy

Managing energy level through the day. Nutrition. Managing destructive habits.

(Raised 9 times)

Preparing for key meetings and presentations

Speaking confidently in front of larger groups. Better structure, stature and pace. More participative. Engaging and thoroughly memorable for all the right reasons. Corporate story telling.

(Raised 9 times)

Professional self promotion

Become replaceable, in order to be promoted to take on new challenges.

(Raised 7 times)

Am I an entrepreneur?

Have I got what’s necessary? Is it best to have a go and possibly fail than not know?

(Raised 7 times)

More gravitas

Refreshing self-image. Less need for endless consultation. Less of the grasshopper mind and flitting. Making considered presentations. Enhancing ability to ask incisive questions.

(Raised 6 times)

Work/life balance

Giving oneself permission to relax to recharge batteries. Dealing with self-imposed guilt.

(Raised 6 times)

Having ‘difficult conversations’

Having those ‘difficult conversations’. Observation and intervention at the right time to raise performance levels. Providing timely feedback to others, in the right way.

(Raised 6 times)