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Sometimes you win, sometimes you learn. Sometimes you win and learn.

Life has a curious way of teaching us—sometimes through victories, sometimes through lessons learned. At Populus Group, we've come to understand that success isn't just about the destination; it's about the journey and the invaluable lessons it gifts us.

As we step into the horizon of the new year, we carry with us a treasure trove of insights—lessons that have shaped our path to success, lessons that continue to guide our footsteps into 2024. Here are four things we're taking with us into the next year to help us be successful:

 

Lesson 1: Work Harder AND Smarter

That’s not a typo.

The age-old debate: work smarter, not harder. But what if we told you that if you work smart and hard, a lot of cool things can get done? Working hard is about resilience—it's the sweat, the grind, and the unwavering determination and grit to push through adversities. Picture the marathon runner, a relentless pursuit towards the finish line. On the flip side, working smart is about finesse—strategic decisions, editing and clarifying the 'why', focusing on what truly matters, and making sure the right people are aligned within the team. It's the art of precision in a world filled with distractions.

When you put these together, you combine an incredible amount of persistence to push through the obstacles and get the most important things done. For Populus Group, this looked like realigning some teams, bringing in some new technology, and doing more with less. It can be a messy process, but with clarity on your side, it makes it a little easier.

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Lesson 2: Goals Work

The allure of big dreams and ambitious goals! But setting goals is merely the tip of the iceberg—it's in the deconstruction of these aspirations where the real magic happens. Imagine a grand vision for the year—a target that seems both exhilarating and daunting. But hold on, let's not get overwhelmed just yet. Breaking it down into bite-sized chunks—quarters, months, weeks, days—that's the secret sauce.

If your goal is to achieve “XX” in a year, what needs to be done this quarter to accomplish that goal? Then, what needs to be done this month to accomplish your quarterly goal? To meet your monthly goal, ask “What do I need to get done this week?” and finally “What do I need to do today?”. Set a goal then break it down. It's not just about setting the course; it's about charting the map to reach your destination, one milestone at a time.

 

social posts 2023 (67)Lesson 3: Teamwork Makes the Dream Work

The past years brought about a whirlwind of change; people shifted roles, new faces joined the crew. That means in 2023, a lot of time was spent building trust with new team members. The first thing to remember about your team is that every single person is a human who is going to have good days and bad days. Times when they are ridiculously productive and times when answering a couple of emails feels like a win.

In knowledge work, that’s just how the energy flows. However, having a team to build trust with, lean on, get feedback from, and laugh with makes work better. Never underestimate the power of working on a good team. Get to know your team personally. Get to know the people on the teams that your work impacts. This will build trust faster and help you and your team’s growth.

 

Lesson 4: There’s no substitute for doing the work

We can dream about working hard, set goals, and tell our teams about them; however, none of it means anything if we don’t get up and do the work. If we aren’t careful, we will try to get more inspired and motivated instead of doing the work. We don’t need more inspiration; we need more dedication.

At PG, we've seen the allure of procrastination, the waiting for the perfect moment. But here's the truth—there's never a perfect moment. There's only now. The time is now to roll up our sleeves and dive headfirst into the work that awaits us in 2024.


So, here's our challenge to you—close this tab, stow away your phone, bid adieu to the beckoning calls of social media, do the work, and kick 2024’s butt! 💪 Let's embark on this journey together, where hard work intertwines with smart strategy, and where the sparks of success light the path. Here's to making 2024 the year where we redefine what it means to chase our dreams and conquer our goals.

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