Julie Tucker
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SMART New Year resolutions

Following a tumultuous 2023, when businesses of all sizes faced the challenges of soaring inflation and costs, it’s time to put that behind us and make some positive New Year resolutions.

We’re going to give you the lowdown on how to make some SMART New Year resolutions that will get 2024 off to a flying start.

Why do New Year resolutions fail?

A poll of 2,000 Brits by Duo Lingo, the language app, revealed only 38% of adults were still on track with their resolutions by the end of January 2023.

The hardest resolution to stick to was eating healthily, with 36% of us having fallen by the wayside by the end of the month.

The second most failed resolution was cutting down daily mobile phone screen time, with 34% of people finding it impossible.

Going to the gym twice a week was a resolution that 33% of us couldn’t manage, while 25% of Brits failed to reduce the time spent on social media – especially TikTok.

Just why is it so hard to stick to our New Year resolutions? According to scientists, it’s not completely down to will power.

Attaining New Year resolutions means building a connection between your efforts and the reward to keep engaged. Once you’ve reached one small target, it’s on to the next and so on.

What is a SMART objective?

A SMART objective is setting goals that are specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time bound.

Setting SMART New Year resolutions is following this theory in terms of things you can do as an individual to improve your own life and wellbeing.

If you’re one of the 62% of Brits who had failed to keep your resolutions by the end of January 2023, rethink your latest goals to make sure you don’t make the same mistake again.

Surveys show the most common New Year resolution ideas for work include learning new skills, networking more, improving time management skills, decluttering workspace, changing careers or launching your own business.

However, the vague resolutions, such as “make more money” or “get promoted” are destined to fail, sadly, because they are far too ambiguous.

A SMART resolution is one that can be achieved within a realistic timeframe, with a specific goal. It needs to be achievable – possibly by breaking it down into smaller steps, each with a measurable end result.

For example, rather than just aspiring to improve your leadership skills, a SMART resolution would be, “Improve my leadership skills and provide evidence of my successes to prove I’m ready for promotion in December 2024.”

You can break this resolution down into smaller, achievable steps in a realistic timeframe.

How to set smart objectives

First, define your goals! The two main types are performance goals and professional development goals.

As their name suggests, performance goals relate to employees’ day-to-day duties.

Examples of performance goals could be increasing monthly sales by 10% by the end of Q2, or reducing the use of materials that aren’t environmentally friendly by 15% within one month.

You could aim to reduce staff turnover by 20% by the end of 2024 or bring three new suppliers on board this year to reduce the risk of supply chain disruption.

Professional development goals can also be broken down into smaller milestones and measured.

Examples can include mentoring a junior employee for the next three months for one hour a week, taking a course to enhance your communication skills, or reading through suggested literature on a particular topic related to your role.

Other examples could include completing a course to learn about new technology relating to your duties, or chairing two meetings per month to help improve your own presentation skills.

All these SMART goals are achievable and measurable. By using this type of New Year resolution, employees will enjoy greater clarity about results and expectations.

It also means being totally committed towards delivering the outcome and understanding what’s needed to achieve a particular goal.

In terms of your role within the company, SMART goals can increase engagement and productivity because you’re keen to rise to a challenge. You will also be required to participate in regular and consistent feedback with colleagues and managers, encouraging greater collaboration.

The result will be improved efficiency both in your job and within your department and the company as a whole.

Create an action plan with a clear structure to help complete your targets. Break it down into sections. Work with your line manager to put the plan together so everyone understands the expectations at the start and through every step.

How can coworking help?

A coworking environment is great for helping you achieve your New Year resolutions. It gives you the best chance of reaching your goals, rather than working alone at home, because you’re together with colleagues. This boosts morale and gives you an extra incentive to keep going.

When it comes to completing more complex tasks, or simply bonding for extra support, there’s no substitute for being with like-minded professionals in an inspirational environment. If your New Year’s resolution is to try out coworking space, Farringdon is an ideal location to inspire your team. With glass walls, natural light, steel beams, marble columns and original exposed brickwork, our premier office space also boasts fully stocked kitchens, breakout spaces and music.

When it comes to international data relating to coworking space, London is top of the world rankings in terms of its popularity. There are more than 1,400 coworking spaces within the capital, ranking it above New York and Hong Kong, as a result of the number of people who have realised the benefits.


© karen roach / Shutterstock.com


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