New (Academic) Year’s Resolutions


Autumn is just a few days away and it’s the perfect time to commit to making this academic year better than the last. Here then is a curmudgeon’s guide to how it’s done:

  • Be elitist – Try using discretion when identifying the audiences you are targeting for…well, just about anything. Don’t try to reach everyone.
  • Be narrow-minded – Focus your communications on just 1 or 2 key points. And then state them eloquently.
  • Be judgmental – Put yourself in the recipients’ shoes and wonder, “Is this too long? Does it make my eyes glaze over? Would I understand what to do if I received it unexpectedly?”
  • Be uncomfortable – Embrace the awkward pause. Ask people outside your circle for their ideas. Cultivate opinions you disagree with. See what you can learn from this approach.
  • Be ruthless – Cut the activities you know are past their prime. Sunset the events that aren’t working. Jettison the “To Do’s” that aren’t moving the ball. Make room for new ideas and activities – even if you aren’t sure yet that they will succeed.

Above all, be sure to stay true to your plans and be resolute in accomplishing your goals.

Best Practices
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