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It can be hard to know where to start when it comes to planning and dreaming for your company’s next year. At Township we created a visioning process to help us both think big and make sure we can attain those goals with creative strategies and clear action items.
This process moves you through four phases:
First, look back at your past year. What do we want to take with us from the past year into the next? →
Then, bring some passion back to the conversation. Let’s root ourselves back into our core values and remind ourselves why we love doing what we do. →
Look forward and nail down three goals for the next year. Think big with aspirations before you zero in on feasible scope. →
Then, turn the most meaningful themes into attainable goals. Develop a strategy with key results to help you know what ‘done’ looks like for the next year.
Wherever possible, we suggest doing these exercises as a group conversation (whether in person or remotely), as the resulting energy and creativity can really bring that extra spark to your goals. For example, at Township we held 2-day off site with our leadership team where we broke each section of this process down into 2-hour sessions.
However, sometimes time can be tight, and this process can also be done as an async exercise or multiple virtual meeting blocks. Take this template and make it your own!
(be sure to click into each exercise for example questions and prompts!)
1. Post Mortem
Start with a post mortem of your year - if possible, send these questions to your team ahead of time as homework - it’s nice to let everyone do this reflection on their own, then come together with some thoughts prepared and to discuss. Try your best not to think about the future, there will be plenty of time for that later!
Answer the question, what do we want to take with us from this past year moving forward? What do we want to leave behind?
2. Stoke the Fire
Now that you’ve got a clear memory of the past, it’s time to stoke the fire again, or restate our purpose. The people in this meeting are here because they’ve invested a significant amount of their time, energy, creativity, and input to make this company what it is. Take some time to remind ourselves why we’re here, why we want to stay here, and who we’re passionate about being.
Reminding and restating our purpose, along with action items that would help us walk the walk. What’s worth investing in our company? What keeps us investing in our company?
3. Shoot The Moon
We’ve reflected on our year, what’s good and bad, what’s working and not working. We’ve rediscovered our purpose and brought clarity to what exactly draws us to stay. Now it’s time to write the next chapter.
In this exercise we’re going to be talking about big picture goals. This is not the time to get specific, and these goals do not have to be time sensitive. This is the time to stay zoomed out, bird’s eye view, big picture, however you want to think about it. We’ll get into the details later.
Three overarching, company-wide goals for the next year.
4. The How
In the last exercise, we nailed down big picture goals that we’re excited to see our company pursue. Now it’s time to bring specificity and tangibility to these goals. This will most likely be your most time-consuming, meatiest exercise (in a good way), so try and allot some extra time if possible.
- Turning our goals into SMART goals: What is the goal’s specific purpose, how do we measure it, what are the steps we’re going to take to achieve it, and what time is associated with those steps?
- A strategy for how we will stay committed to these goals.
- A strategy for sharing this information with the rest of your team.