Thinking about 2023... and the year to come
This week’s edition of Impact Loop is a little different; it is the final edition for 2023 and I thought I would reflect a little on the year that has been and the year I hope might follow in 2024. Impact Loop will be back again in 2024 from 1 February.
Do you try and take time to reflect on some of your achievements in the year that has been? And have you started to think about what you might like to achieve in the year ahead?
The Year Just Gone
Head & Heart
2023 has been a much bigger, and more significant year, than I ever could have imagined.
Way back on 31 January, my second book, Head & Heart: The Art of Modern Leadership was launched in Australia. Since then, the worldwide rights were sold and Head & Heart is now available around the world.
I can’t tell you how nerve wracking it is for any writer to share a book with the world. You are always - always - nervous about how it will be received.
The response to Head & Heart has been so wonderful to witness, not just through the dozens and dozens of messages I have received (thank you!) but through more formal means as well. Head & Heart has been -
Named by Thinkers50 as one of 10 best new management books of 2023
Won Royal Society of Arts 2023 Career Book Award
Named by Next Big Idea Club as one of the top 23 books of 2023
Shortlisted in the 2023 Porchlight Business Book Awards
Shortlisted in the 2023 Australian Business Book Awards
Named in HR Magazine Winter Reading list
Named in the Innovation Australia Summer Reading list
The reason I mention all this is because so often this year I have found myself lost in the weeds with Head & Heart - organising launching events, recording podcasts, posting social media posts, following sales data, speaking at conferences… that for much of the year I forgot to stand back and think of all that had happened. There may have been one disappointment on a day or a week that would cloud my ability to see the bigger picture.
I suspect we all do this, especially when it involves something we are passionate about and we really believe in. All too easily we can focus on a small speed hump that slows us down without realising the long journey we have also completed.
Do you ever get lost in the detail or daily challenges you face and forget what the big picture of what you have achieved along the way?
This post is the first time I have really taken stock and it makes me feel incredibly proud of Head & Heart and so very, very grateful to everyone who has supported and believed in the book. Thank you. Thank you.
Got a Minute?
On Wednesday, my 138th weekly Got a Minute? workplace advice column was published in the Sydney Morning Herald and The Age. It has now been running every week for three years.
I am so grateful for the enormous number of readers of Got a Minute? - because of you the column continues to go from strength to strength. One of the true joys of my life is reading all the hundreds of questions I am sent - sadly, far more than I can ever answer - and offering whatever advice I can.
And just in case you weren’t aware (or find yourself locked out behind the paywall), you can see search and read the entire archive of Got a Minute? on my website.
On a personal note …
Earlier this year I was overwhelmed to be named in January in the Australia Day Honours list when I received an AM (Member of the Order of Australia). The citation was for “significant service to business, and gender equality.” A very proud moment and it means so much to be recognised in this way at the highest level.
I was equally proud in November, when at the Thinkers50 Gala in London, I was ranked in the Thinkers50 list of top 50 management thinkers in the world (the only Australian on the list) and later that night also won the Distinguished Leadership Award for my work and research in Head & Heart.
In the short 2 minute video below, Thinkers50 captured the moment immediately after I won the award. Watching it I can still see the genuine astonishment, pride and excitement I felt (and continue to feel) having received such an honour. It has truly been life changing.
The Year Ahead
For some years I have been juggling my work as a professional company director with my passion for writing and research. A few weeks ago I announced my retirement from my last corporate board to focus on the other work I do that I am truly passionate about and committed to. I turned 50 this year and I couldn’t be more excited to spend it writing, research, speaking and helping others.
My career has never gone in a straight trajectory and this will really become my ‘third career’ because I have made a significant career choice like this twice before in my life.
Once, when I left the military at the age of 25 to study law and pursue a corporate, executive career instead. And second, when I left my executive career to focus on a non-executive board career. I have never regretted either decision and while the unknown is always a little nerve-wracking, I am excited for what the future holds.
Have you ever had to make a career or life decision that was one you knew was the right one for you, but still made you feel anxious about the unknown?
Now that I will be focused entirely on what I love doing, in 2024 I plan to focus on -
My next book - I have signed a new publishing deal with Penguin and will spend every spare moment research and writing. I am excited (and terrified!) to announce the publication date will be March 2025.
Keynotes and workshops - I will be doing even more public speaking work and I am already booked for events in Boston, Montreal, Paris, Las Vegas, Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne.
Corporate advisory - Now that I have a bit more capacity, I am being asked to advise boards and CEOs on tricky leadership and culture issues. The range of issues I am asked to advise on is very broad but include things like leadership capability assessments, culture reviews, delicate leadership situations … and everything in between.
Executive coaching - I have always offered coaching to senior leaders and will continue to do that in 2024.
Got a Minute? - My weekly column in the Sydney Morning Herald and the Age will be back in 2024 answering reader questions on the workplace, leadership and careers every Wednesday.
Impact Loop - I would love to try and make sure this newsletter really meets your needs in 2024 and would love your feedback to help me do that -
Do you like the existing format of some brief advice from me, a link to another article or piece of research, and a question to focus your leadership for the week?
Would you prefer to see me cover other issues? Let me know what they might be.
How do you like the weekly frequency of Impact Loop? Would you like to see it more often or less often?
What else would you like to hear from me on?
What else would be helpful for me to know?
You can always reach me via email using email@example.com or through my website.
If you have managed to get to the end of this extra long newsletter, thank you! I am so grateful you are part of the Impact Loop community and I am looking forward to connecting with you more in the future.
There will be no Impact Loop in January (while I enjoy some summer holidays with my family and work on my new book) - Impact Loop will be back again on Thursday 1 February.
You can read more in my latest book, Head & Heart: The Art of Modern Leadership, which is available everywhere.