the middles p. kim bui 1
the middles p. kim bui 1

The Middles: Goal-setting When Everything Changes

By P. Kim Bui It's a new year, so get a new mantra. Kim walks managers through three ways to get through goal-setting when everything around you is changing.

Set yearly goals/themes

I don’t have a ten-year plan. It seems every time I make a long-term goal, I either reach it very quickly, or it completely changes because the state of my industry, or the world, or whatever else.

But I do make yearly goals. Some of these come out in themes, which I do instead of resolutions. I believe 2014 was a year of yes. 2015 was a year of work. 2016 was a year of intention. This is a yearly thread in Tech Lady Mafia that really changed my life.

Sit down and think what about your work (or life!) needs your focus next year. Make it almost a mantra. I tend to pick a single word, but others write a statement.

Set SMART goals

At SRCCON: Work I participated in a great goal-setting/visioning session with The New York Times’ Jessica Kosturko where she reminded us to make SMART goals — that is Specific. Measurable. Achievable. Relevant. Time-bound.

Instead of saying “I’m going to innovate my workplace!” the goal would be more like “I am going to make sure I schedule 4 hours of project time for each of my employees so they can work on passion projects and we’ll track the projects together at our weekly check-ins.”

The idea is to make a grand idea much smaller and bite-sized.

What’s your year going to be like?

Alexandra Samuel (a brilliant human and tech writer) shared this great booklet for planning your 2018.

It’s called Yearly Compass and it might take a few hours to do, but it seems like it may well be worth looking back to look forward.  I’m actually sending this newsletter on a Sunday to give you a day to sit down and maybe accomplish which as the new year starts.

Happy New Year. If you sit down and do some goal-setting, I’d love to see the results!

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About the author

P. Kim Bui

P. Kim Bui is the editor-at-large for NowThis News, focusing on original, social reporting and breaking news. Prior to NowThis, she was deputy managing editor for, a digital media startup specializing in social journalism. Her career has focused on leading breaking news initiatives and new storytelling forms for local, national and global audiences.

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