01/02/2013 11:58 EST | Updated 11/09/2015 02:59 EST

How to Get What You Want at Work in 2013

It is a new year. time to dust off that old piece of paper with your goals from last year and take a moment to compare what you set out to accomplish with what you actually got done. Did you hit all of your goals?

If so, then shame on you! Set them higher this year and really push yourself! You need a few goals in there that you will always have to work toward. It should not be easy. The point is that you stretch and challenge yourself. So, it is 2013 -- what is your plan for this year? Have you even thought about it yet? Personally? Professionally?

I have worked with companies that did not start planning for the new year until January 1. That was always a head scratcher for me. Felt like we wasted a full quarter of the year not knowing what the goals were for the upcoming year. Are your people in limbo or have you already rushed out of the gate with your goals for the year? If so, kudos to you; it is always nice to work with a clear understanding of what is expected for the upcoming year. If not, get on it!

Here are some tips as you think about what you want to accomplish this year:

1. Set 4 or 5 goals for the year, any less is too easy, any more is too confusing

2. One of the goals should be a stretch goal, something that you most likely will not be able to accomplish, but something that raises the bar for everyone

3. Keep your goals aligned to the needs of the business. If they are not, they are basically workday hobbies, not goals

4. Make the goals exciting. If they are all business and you do not get any enjoyment from accomplishing them, trying to achieve them will quickly become a chore

5. Communicate, over communicate, and communicate again... Put the goals front and center and let everyone know what you are gunning for

It is not too late if you have not started the planning process, but it is getting close to fiscal cliff proportions if you do not get on it soon. Take the time over the next few days and get it together. It is time for a new year and a new set of challenges that produce positive outcomes.

Happy New Year!

New Year, New Beginnings