You’ve seen all the stats: Most people break their New Year’s resolutions before we hit February. But you can buck this trend – especially with resolutions you set for your Finance department.
Resolutions are an important exercise. The new year brings a new opportunity to start with a clean slate and eliminate some of those less-than-desirable habits.
Same goes for Finance. Some resolutions both for your department as a whole and for individual staffers can make 2013 the year you enjoy some productivity-enhancing improvements.
So how do you make sure the goals you set collectively and individually stick?
Take a cue from the American Psychological Association, which offered tips to increase your odds of resolution resolve:
Don’t set a goal to take all of your receivables electronic this year – you’re likely setting yourself and your staffers up for disappointment. Instead focus on a smaller, more manageable goal, like getting your top 20% of customers to pay you electronically.
Change one behavior at a time
“Becoming more customer-service oriented” is a great goal, but better to focus on adjusting one behavior before moving on to the next. Maybe that means first working on responding quickly to questions from internal and external customers. Once that’s done you can move on to how staffers respond under pressure when tempers flare.
You don’t have to send out a company-wide memo, but posting a departmental resolution up in Finance for all to see keeps everyone thinking about the goal long after January. It’s a good reminder to keep plugging along.
Seek out support
You probably have plenty of resources within your own company to help you make progress towards Finance’s goals. Why not have your own Customer Service folks come in and offer tips if adopting a more customer-friendly attitude is your resolution? Same goes for individual goals. If a staffer has set an individual work resolution, think how you can help that person. Maybe there’s someone else on staff you can offer as a mentor to guide that individual along (like your most tech-savvy staffer or even someone from IT to help that person looking to build her tech skills in 2013).