I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving! Ours was filled with much laughter and quality time with family and friends. And, of course, delicious once-a-year food.

Still, all the work that goes into the holidays feels like an outright ordeal at times, doesn’t it? It takes a lot of energy and preparation to pull everything and everyone together. (The turkey never cooks itself, after all.)

Getting ready for that one big meal requires umpteen discussions and numerous lists, as well as shopping, cleaning, and cooking . . . In a word: planning.

So, why do we put ourselves through it every year? Because the pay-off is worth the investment.

Strong planning and prepping for a holiday get-together means that, when the time comes, we’re able to sit down at the table and truly be present. We do the hard work upfront so we can enjoy the fruits of our labors later. We’re investing in a better future, even if that future is simply enjoying a meal with loved ones.

New York Times Bestseller and speaker Rory Vaden suggests we ask ourselves, “What can I do today that would make tomorrow better?” It’s a powerful question. And it’s one that applies to many aspects of life, far beyond holiday meals. In fact, as leaders, it’s a question we should ask ourselves frequently.

What can you do today that will make your organization run more smoothly in the future? Here are a few ideas to get your wheels turning:

  • Take a day away from the office to do some strategic thinking.
  • Substitute an afternoon of creative brainstorming for a budget planning session (or vice versa).
  • Allot several hours to set up a new system in order to save many more hours in the future.
  • Plan a training session for your team members to round out their leadership strengths.

Challenge yourself to find the planning strategies that will fit best for you and your team. And try different things to stretch yourself. If you need inspiration, here’s a Harvard Business Review article about how successful leaders use reflection and strategic planning.

Just imagine how much more productive 2018 would be if you made an investment in planning now.

Take time today to plan. The pay-off is a better future for your company, your team, and yourself.


Michelle Kelly, CEO (Chief Enjoyment Officer)


P.S. Planning and strategizing for the future doesn’t have to be drudgery. We can provide strategic consulting to help you create a thriving future. (And we’ll make it fun.) To get a glimpse into how we could partner with you, contact me for a free 30-minute consultation.


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