Happy New Year! It is time for new beginnings and fresh starts. It is time to set goals and look forward to new growth and new development. The old saying, “If you don’t know where you’re going, you’ll never know when you’re there,” (or something like that) is so true. All of this is a just another way of saying resolutions. The difference is we seem to be more accepting of not meeting our resolutions, while goals, especially when tied to merit pay or other rewards, are taken much more seriously.
I propose that this year, the new decade, you make some resolutions around service management that you will work to keep. I encourage you to make some service management resolutions for you, your team, and your organization. Goals are typically tied directly to organizational goals or departmental goals. These are important and should obviously continue. I suggest in addition and in alignment with that, you make sure one or some of your resolutions are service management oriented. How else will you grow service management in your space?
This year, make some resolutions around service management that you will keep.
So where do you start? Start where you are. Set aside some real time on your calendar. Spend some time being honest with yourself about where you and your team are. Reflect on the past year. Reflect on the past few years.
The logical starting place in service management is continual improvement as defined by ITIL®. In fact, at the core of any new resolution in service management is continual improvement. The ITIL 4 framework is made up of the ITIL Service Value System (SVS) and the four dimensions: organizations and people, information and technology, partners and suppliers, value streams and processes. The core components of the ITIL SVS are the ITIL service value chain, the ITIL practices, the ITIL guiding principles, governance, and continual improvement. Continual improvement is simply ongoing assessment and improvement in the management of products and services. ITIL 4 introduces the ITIL Continual Improvement Model. It asks seven questions to consider when looking to improve:
- What is the vision?
- Where are we now?
- Where do we want to be?
- How do we get there?
- Take action
- Did we get there?
- How do we keep momentum going?
This list should help illuminate what needs attention and where you can make resolutions.
When you have ideas of where to improve, it is always a good idea to use George Doran’s SMART goals guidelines. Your resolutions should be specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time bound. Each letter of the acronym is significant and relevant. Leaving any of the letters out will likely make your resolutions vague or irrelevant.
From there, it is important that you write your resolutions down. I began writing my goals and resolutions down in high school. My marketing teacher, Mrs. Wilson, had a former student come in to speak to us one day. The former student had written his goals, in ink, on a piece of notebook paper that he kept in his wallet. He took it out in class that day so we could see the wrinkled and torn piece of paper. He told a story of writing on that paper his goal to meet President Ronald Reagan and then explained how he in fact did that at a speech President Reagan gave. He had a plan and he actually talked his way through security to get backstage and meet him when he was still a teenager.
Thirty years later, I still remember this story and write my own goals (resolutions) down. This drives me to commit and move toward achieving everything I have aimed to do. Therefore, in addition to making resolutions you intend to keep, I encourage you to write them down.
Finally, keep your resolutions where you will see them daily and be reminded to work towards them. I keep mine in my time management tool and look at them every day. They could be on a white board in your office or a part of your desktop background. Keep them front and center so they will be in your mind always. When planning your time and prioritizing projects, consider what activities and projects will help you accomplish your goals and resolutions.
My hope is that using these tools will help you set great service management resolutions for the New Year. May your new year be happy and full of success.
Vicki Rogers has more than 20 years of IT experience and is currently the Senior Manager of Change at Georgia Tech Previously, she was a senior IT manager at Amtrak and the service desk manager at the University of West Georgia. She has expertise in service management, change management, leadership development, and diversity in IT. She has been involved in service desk creation, implementation, and adoption of ITSM best practices, as well as insourcing IT. Vicki has a BBA in Business Management, an MBA, and an EdS in Learning, Leadership, and Organizational Development. Her graduate research involved cultivating and developing women leaders in higher education IT divisions. Vicki is a regular national speaker on leadership, service management, diversity,and change. Outside of work and school, Vicki is the mom of two brilliant and successful college girls and one very spoiled schnauzer. Follow Vicki on Twitter @vickirogers.