Lumen Impact Group
Lumen Impact Group

Gave Up on Your New Year’s Resolution? This Is for You.

Published: March 2, 2022
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Like many teams and individuals around the world, you may have started this year off setting big goals. We certainly did! 2021 was an incredible year for us at Lumen Impact Group with our team growing from two employees to five (more on that later). As last year was wrapping up, we knew we were ready for some big, exciting January goals.  

But we have all been there: how many years have you set that New Year’s Resolution, and by February you are back to your old habits? The odds that your exercise or cleaning regime has taken a hit by March is pretty high. 

If we’ve learned anything over the past two years, it’s that we need smaller goals as well – digestible targets to support our big, exciting dreams. Some days you’re going to hit all your marks and crush your goals. Other days it’s going to be a win if you don’t set your home office on fire or throw your laptop out the window. 

So, how do we dream big while also having reasonable expectations? What do those New Year’s resolutions look like?

We sought out to create such resolutions last November, when our full team gathered in person for the first time. Our team had multiplied in 2021, going from a team of two— Lisa Diaz and Stephanie VanDyk— to a team of five. With our three new incredibly gifted members— Dr. Laura Groth, Kelly Cadman, and Cori Egan— we were ready to hit the ground running. 

In the past, we found ourselves building the plane as we were flying it. Our weekend was focused on setting goals around what the plane should look like, how it should fly, and where it should go. How would our proverbial plane deal with delays or events beyond our control? What daily and weekly maintenance can we schedule in order to keep the plane in working order?

The Lumen team asked these questions to develop a strategy that celebrates the little goals, which lead to observable, measurable impact. And for that, we’re learning the value in thinking smaller, like Sarah Von Bargen does with her “Every *Darn* Day Lists.” We need big, exciting January 1 goals, but we also need middle-of-February-why-is-it-still-winter, what-do-you-mean-school-is-virtual-again goals. 

Because let’s be honest, we don’t always have the time and space to tackle those bigger strategic priorities every day. These are the goals that may not be super exciting, but we know we must reach them if we want to maintain a foundation for impact and success. Sometimes just maintaining that foundation is enough of a win for the day.

So, here’s the question: what is the minimum success you need to count that day as a win? The Lumen team can end a not-perfect day saying “at least I was able to  …” 

  • intentionally connect with a teammate. — Stephanie 
  • take a break that was more productive and useful than scrolling news feeds, like taking a walk, meditating, or reading an article. — Laura 
  • read all my emails, or at least skim the subject lines and acknowledge that they exist — Lisa 
  • push every priority forward at least a little bit, so everything is in better shape than it was the day before. Nothing is becoming so stagnant that I’ll be afraid to come back to it. — Cori 
  • update and review my project task list, so I know what’s coming tomorrow. — Kelly 

Could this strategy help you and your team set up your new year for success now that some time has passed since you set those big fun January resolutions? Create your own version of an “every darn day” list, and put it on your desk. Maybe grab a mini white board that can sit next to your computer (we love this one). Even a sticky note will do!

It’s March 2022. We’re in it, and the daily work can be hard when the shine of the new year has dimmed a bit. We hope that with a few daily wins, you’ll be able to feel a little of the January 1st sparkle in between the moments when you get to think and win bigger.

Testimonials

"I have worked with Lumen Impact Group at both the individual and organizational level. As a coach, Lisa has a natural ability to get to the heart of the matter quickly and to ask questions that help her clients translate insight into action. Each team member who has worked with Lisa in a coaching capacity has demonstrated visible growth that has positively impacted individual and team performance. As an organization, we are trying to be purposeful about the culture we are creating, as a means of best fulfilling our mission. Lumen Impact Group has been a tremendous thought partner along the way and has facilitated critical steps in a collaborative yet efficient and fun way. Our team was in awe at how much we accomplished collectively in a short period of time. We are moving toward our ideal culture much more quickly than I thought possible, and I have no doubt it is because of Lumen Impact Group’s guidance. "
Kasey Miller
Chief of Staff, National Association of Charter School Authorizers
"Lumen Impact Group has been critical in supporting Bluum’s efforts in Idaho to manage our $17.1 million federal Charter School Program grant. As one of the country’s first non-profit organizations to receive federal CSP funding, the stakes for our work are very high, and our efforts to help open, expand and replicate public charter schools face scrutiny. I sleep better knowing Lumen Impact Group has worked closely with us to build our processes, procedures and playbook for managing the responsibility of directing and overseeing a significant federal grant. I highly recommend them to others. They are true pros."
Terry Ryan
CEO, Bluum
"You were patient, confident, helpful and supportive, and you coaxed and lovingly nudged us through a process that on our own we wouldn’t have been able to do. It was a very pleasant experience, and even though we still have a lot of challenges ahead of us, we are better suited to meet them. "
Colin Sharkey
Executive Director, Association of American Educators
"Lisa Diaz and Lumen Impact provided invaluable support to Colorado Charter Facility Solutions during our start-up phase. I was the new non-profit organization’s executive director (and only employee at the time), and Lisa knew answers to questions that I did not even know to ask. She made sure the board of directors was set up correctly and that the organizational documents were in place. Lisa helped me establish the organization’s goals and ways to track progress. Lisa is organized, patient and kind, and worked quickly, thoroughly and collaboratively. She is a good listener and even acted as an executive coach/therapist at times. When necessary, Lisa can be direct, yet she is always focused on the goals of the organization and its success. I highly recommend Lisa Diaz and Lumen Impact Group. "
Jane Ellis
Executive Director, Colorado Charter Facility Solutions
"Lisa did a fantastic job with our entire strategic planning team. Her process was beyond organized. As a new administrator, I was able to lean on Lisa for her expertise and knowledge of strategic planning. She did everything from meeting organization and to facilitating subgroups, focus groups and staff culture surveys. Her work with the school board and administrative team was respectful, while also filled with appropriate advice and constructive feedback. I could not imagine going through this process without Lisa. She will continue to be a trusted resource for years to come."
Jamie DeWitt
School Leader, NexTech High School
"As a family-owned and operated company, we needed to preserve our culture and define our mission, vision and values better as we grew. Lumen Impact Group helped capture a variety of diverse perspectives and hopes for the future in a way that connected everyone involved. Lumen Impact Group helped us create a clear strategic focus and for our future stabilized our culture. Lisa also coached our leadership team in supporting implementation."
Mark Smith
President, Krapohl Ford & Lincoln