Self Help

The 12 Week Year Field Guide - Brian P. Moran

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Matheus Puppe

· 10 min read



Here is a summary of the key points about the Cover design: Wiley from the copyright text:

  • The text is the standard copyright notice for the book “The 12 Week Year Field Guide” published by John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

  • It states that no part of the publication may be reproduced without permission from the publisher.

  • It provides limitations on liability/disclaimer of warranty, stating that the publisher and authors have used best efforts but make no guarantees about accuracy or completeness.

  • It provides standard copyright and contact information for Wiley Publications including rights management, permission requests, technical support contact details, and cataloging information.

  • In summary, it is the standard legal copyright and permissions notice included in books published by Wiley. It establishes ownership and permissions related to the content in the book.

  • The 12 Week Year focuses execution on the week and day level, where actual work gets done, rather than annual planning which can feel distant.

  • The three principles that drive success are Accountability, Commitment, and Greatness in the Moment.

  • Accountability is taking ownership of your actions and results. Commitment is keeping promises to yourself to build integrity and success. Greatness in the Moment is choosing daily disciplines even when you don’t feel like it.

  • The five disciplines are Vision, Planning, Process Control, Scorekeeping, and Time Use. Vision provides direction and energy. Planning includes 12-week goals and tactics. Process Control ensures daily execution. Scorekeeping provides feedback. Time Use means being intentional.

  • Applying these principles and disciplines over 12-week cycles builds increased capacity for achieving goals in less time.

  • Starting the journey requires creating a compelling long-term vision through exercises like describing what you want to HAVE, DO and BE in the future to drive ambition and stretch outside limits.

In summary, the 12 Week Year framework provides a structured yet focused approach to goal achievement through principles of accountability, commitment and disciplines like vision, planning, execution and measurement applied over 12-week intervals.

  • Don’t let fear stop you from achieving your vision. Anxiety arises from thinking you don’t know how to do something needed, but focusing on “how” comes later.

  • Focus on envisioning what your life would be like if you accomplished your big vision. How would things be different?

  • Complete the “Have-Do-Be” exercise to brainstorm things you would like to have, do, and be in life. This helps spark ideas for your long-term vision.

  • Construct your long-term vision, describing your ideal life 5-10+ years in the future. Pull from your “Have-Do-Be” lists.

  • Craft your three-year personal and business visions, providing specific details in areas like health, family, career, business goals, income etc.

  • Optional: Determine your 12-month vision if needed for annual goals.

  • Common vision pitfalls to avoid are not taking vision seriously, not making it meaningful, and having too small of a vision.

  • Take action to empower your vision by sharing it, regularly reviewing it, connecting daily actions to it, and being intentional in progressing it.

  • Establish specific 12-week goals aligned with your longer term visions to focus your upcoming 12-week plan.

  • The 12 Week Plan focuses on setting goals and tactics over a 12 week period to drive effective execution.

  • Goals should be specific, measurable, positive, stretch goals that include accountability and deadlines.

  • Tactics are the specific actions taken each week to accomplish the goals. They should be written as complete sentences starting with an action verb and include frequency and deadlines.

  • Mind mapping is used to brainstorm potential tactics for each goal. The most impactful ideas are selected to ensure goals can be achieved with focused tactics.

  • The tactics are then rewritten to meet criteria like being executable in the scheduled week without significant pre-work.

  • Having a handful of well-written goals and supporting tactics increases the chances of effective execution over 12 weeks compared to vague or unfocused plans.

  • The plan is meant to be executed, evaluated, and adjusted to improve results over time rather than being perfect from the start. Regular tracking keeps efforts on track.

Here are the key points about commitments from the passage:

  1. Commitments are powerful because they represent a conscious decision to take specific action to create a desired result. Keeping commitments builds self-respect, integrity, and the ability to follow through.

  2. Benefits of keeping commitments include feeling good about yourself and your abilities. It gets easier to make and keep other promises to yourself when you successfully meet commitments.

  3. The 12 Week Year system focuses commitments on a shorter time frame (12 weeks) rather than annual goals, which makes commitments more feasible and achievable. Meeting 12 week commitments can drive true breakthroughs.

  4. A commitment worksheet is provided to help identify personal goals, commitment actions to reach those goals, and the costs associated with those actions. Circled commitments become official commitments for the next 12 weeks.

  5. Common pitfalls to avoid include giving up after missing a commitment once, failing to confront missed commitments, and not valuing keeping one’s word by making promises that can’t be kept. Confronting problems and recommitting is important for growth.

In summary, keeping commitments is a powerful way to take action, follow through on desired results, and build self-respect within a structured 12 week timeframe according to this passage. Identifying goals, actions and costs upfront helps drive successful commitment-keeping.

Process control involves tools and events to help you stay on track with your 12-week plan. This includes a weekly plan, weekly accountability meetings, daily huddles, 12-week themes, and celebrations.

The weekly plan translates your 12-week goals into specific tactics and commitments for the coming week. Weekly accountability meetings involve checking in with peers each Monday to report on progress and get encouragement. Daily huddles are short daily check-ins to review the previous day and plan the current day. 12-week themes provide an organizing principle to maintain focus. Celebrations at the end of each 12-week period reward accomplishments and motivate continued effort.

Taken together, these process control elements provide structure, accountability and motivation to help you successfully execute your plan over the 12-week period. The research shows they significantly increase the chances of achieving your goals through improved focus, effort and discipline.

  • Implementing scorekeeping and tracking key metrics is important for driving execution in a 12 Week Year. You need to measure both lead indicators (early progress) and lag indicators (end results).

  • Choose 1-2 lead indicators and lag indicators for each goal to track on a weekly basis. Common examples given are inquiries/referrals as lead metrics and sales/units as lag metrics.

  • Calculate a weekly execution score by tracking what percentage of planned tactics were completed each week. The target is 80% or higher.

  • Review the metrics and execution score each week in the Weekly Accountability Meeting to assess progress and make adjustments.

  • The metrics will show you one of four scenarios each week - on track with good execution, not on track with poor execution, on track with poor execution, or not on track with good execution.

  • Tracking the numbers weekly allows you to stay on top of your progress, confront any issues, and make changes to get back on track if needed to hit your 12 week goals. Measuring execution and results is key to the 12 Week Year process.

  • You are executing less than 80% of your tactics but your lead and lag metrics are on track to hit your 12 week goal.

  • Even though you are not fully executing your plan, your metrics are still progressing in a way that will allow you to achieve your 12 week goal.

  • This is an unusual scenario that could be due to luck, an overly difficult plan, or doing something else outside the plan that is driving results.

  • If due to luck, raise your goal or remove the lucky aspect so you are still relying on executing your plan.

  • If plan is too difficult, adjust it to better match what is actually needed to hit the goal.

  • If doing something else outside the plan, replace tactics in plan with what is actually working to set yourself up for continued success by having a written plan.

  • The key takeaway is that your metrics are on track despite low execution. You should analyze why and either modify your plan or continue doing what is actually driving results. Having a written plan that matches your actions improves your chances of sustained success.

  • Achieving goals and success requires effectively managing your time. However, many people struggle with prioritizing and not letting urgent tasks pull them away from important strategic work.

  • Constructive beliefs around managing time effectively include valuing your own time as much as others’, accepting that you can’t do everything, and prioritizing high-value activities first.

  • Breakthrough results require changing your systems and behaviors, not just working incrementally harder. This includes implementing a new “model workweek.”

  • A model workweek consists of three main blocks: Strategic blocks for uninterrupted focus on priorities, Buffer blocks for routine tasks, and Breakout blocks for refreshment and recharging.

  • Strategic blocks are three hours scheduled early in the week for important strategic planning and tactics. Buffer blocks are 30-60 minutes scheduled daily for emails, calls, etc. Breakout blocks are three hours scheduled during the week for relaxation outside of work.

  • Implementing this structured approach through a designed model workweek allows for more effective prioritization of time and energy on high-value activities needed to achieve goals and breakthrough results.

  • The passage recommends scheduling no more than one Breakout Block per month until other areas like execution are working well. Breakout Blocks alone won’t lead to success at the next level.

  • It provides a template to schedule Strategic Blocks, Buffer Blocks, and Breakout Blocks in an ideal weekly calendar. This is called a “model workweek.”

  • Filling out the template helps take back control of your time and align it with your goals and results. It achieves “performance time.”

  • Common pitfalls to avoid include not being willing to change, finding excuses why it won’t work, not sticking with the system long-term, and compromising the dedicated time blocks.

  • After a 12 Week Year, it’s important to celebrate successes, capture lessons learned, and launch into planning the next 12 Week Year. This helps continuously improve and achieve breakthroughs over time.

  • A comprehensive review involves evaluating results and execution quality, quality of life across domains, engagement with key success disciplines, and planning breakthroughs for the next period.

  • To double your results in the next 12 weeks, your thinking and actions will need to change from what you did in the previous 12 weeks.

  • You will need to identify new actions to take each week that will help you breakthrough and achieve higher results. This involves confronting the truth about your performance each week based on tracking your lead and lag measures.

  • The confront the truth process involves assessing your weekly execution score, comparing your actual lead and lag measure results to targets, identifying trends, risks, gaps in performance, and tactics you may be avoiding.

  • This helps you commit to specific actions for the upcoming week to address issues and get back on track. Doing this each week holds you accountable to continuously improving.

  • When you complete your 12 week review, schedule time to create a new 12 week plan building on your momentum from the last 12 weeks. Get started on your next 12 week year right away instead of losing momentum.

  • Using the confront the truth worksheets each week is important for owning your plan, facing the truth about your execution, and taking the necessary actions to reach your goals. This process is key to achieving breakthrough results.

Here is a summary of the Execution Score template:

  • It provides a framework for tracking weekly execution against goals using metrics like execution scores, lead/lag measures, risk assessments, and action planning.

  • The key elements included are:

  • Weekly execution score for each goal

  • Average execution score to date

  • Lead and lag metrics with actual vs target data points

  • Trends over time in scores and metrics

  • Risks, issues, gaps to address

  • Breakdowns in performance

  • Committed actions for the upcoming week

The template is intended to be completed each week over the course of 12 weeks to facilitate continuous improvement, accountability and goal progress monitoring through quantitative and qualitative data. Completing the template helps keep execution on track by surfacing challenges, drive future plans and focus efforts where needed.

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About Matheus Puppe