Goals for 2022 and a Review of 2021

If you’ve been following this blog for a while you’ll know by now that as well as Scrum I’m a huge fan of goals, personal development and productivity. I mentioned recently that I don’t believe in annual goals. However, I do feel that it’s important to look back on what we achieved through the last year and what’s coming up.

I did something similar last year and gave myself the following goals for the year:

  • Read 21 Books – currently sat on 103
  • Write 52 Blog Posts – So far I’ve posted every week (plus a few more for the junior developer series I wrote)
  • Pass my PSM1 – Actually I’ve passed my PSM-I, PSM-II, PSM-III, PSD-I, and SPS
  • Finish my new book – Done, published Donuts and Dragons which is for sale on LeanPub
  • Finish painting my Stark and Lannister armies! – Done, also painted my Imperial Knights and Salamanders

In addition I’ve also passed the AZ-900 exam as well as AWS Cloud Practitioner, AWS Solution Architect Associate, and AWS Security Speciality.

It’s hard to pinpoint the highlights. Most likely passing the PSM-III exam, a really tough exam and something I’m extremely proud of doing.

As for low points. I had a really tough Q4 and it would have been really easy to give up. However I used the scrum techniques of inspection and adaption to identify the issue and prioritised passing the final AWS exam to get myself over the line. We’ve also had some tough months as a family which no doubt impacted caused the wobble.

I’ve mentioned before that I’m not planning on setting goals for 2022, instead I’m going to focus on Q1. I have a few overarching themes of AWS and Scrum which I intend to follow but would also like to spend some more time writing (and a few key work projects to deliver). When you are setting your own quarterly goals I would strongly encourage you to look at your key strategic goals and look at what the next steps are towards them. In my case (as you’ve probably noticed Cloud and Scrum feature very highly).

For Q1 2022 I plan to:

  • Read 20 Books
  • Paint Word Bearers, Raven Guard, and Tully Cavalry
  • Write my new Donuts and Dragons short story
  • Pass AWS Machine Learning Exam
  • Take Scrum.org Product Owner exam
  • Take Scrum.org Kanban for Scrum exam
  • Create and Deliver specific Scrum training course for colleagues at work

A nice balance of professional development and relaxation tasks with some work goals thrown in. Some of these are very ambitious but I’d rather try and fail than assume I can’t do it!

What are your New Year’s goals? Are you working over a 3 month planning period or over the full 12 months? Drop a comment below or let me know on Twitter.

Happy New Year!

New Years Resolutions

I’ve never been much good at keeping resolutions, they start out strong but then quickly slide.

Let’s see if I can do better this year. Here are my New Years Resolutions:

Look at the Needs of the Business

Too often developers and development managers focus too much on the code and the features and not enough on the business they’re working within.

Mind blowing functionality is worthless if it’s not user friendly, performant, and deployed. I want to keep the goals of the business in mind and make sure that my (and my team’s) goals are aligned with them.

Dedicate Time Each Week to Learn

I’m a great believer in continuous learning, but it’s hard – particularly when there’s firefighting to be done or issues to resolve.

To help me continue to grow as a developer and a manager I want to allocate a little time each week to my CPD.

Get out the Office

I mentioned a few weeks ago The Importance of The Local Development Community so this year I want to make a real effort to attend Agile Yorkshire, Leeds Sharp and a DDD Conference!

I want to meet with clients, put in some face time, and understand how our system (both solution and business) works (or doesn’t) for them.

Find And Exploit Our Bottleneck 

If you’ve read The Goal or The Phoenix Project then you’ll have had this one drummed into you. People, teams, and businesses are systems… systems have constraints and bottlenecks, if you want your system to work optimally then you’ll need to find and exploit your bottleneck.

I want do do more work to analyse our Support System to identify the bottlenecks. It’s important for me to understand the big picture. Goldratt tells us that any improvement made anywhere other than the bottleneck is wasted effort, I need to make sure I’ve examined the whole system – customer to customer, if I want to add real value to the business!

The real challenge here will be what to do if the bottlenecks are not within the development team…

Scrutinise Our Signoff Process 

Your signoff process is your last chance to avoid walking into a crisis. Finding bugs is not about luck, it’s about procedure and diligence- I want to continue to give ourselves the best chance possible to find those those showstoppers before the customer!

 

So those are mine, what do you think? What are your professional New Years Resolutions?