Cyber MondayHello Leaders,

Last year, Cyber Monday purchases from US websites topped $2 billion. Roughly half of the purchases made originated from work computers.

Are you shopping online, Cyber Monday 2014?

As we enter the crazy holiday period in many countries and cultures, here are 10 Cyber Monday and end of the year tips:

1. Help your team focus on the big goals. No matter what you do or say, people are distracted this time of the year. Don’t put off other projects or discussions; instead, prioritize.

2. Begin setting goals now—not in January 2015. Start discussions regarding 2015 team and individual goals with your team members, and you will then have an opportunity to begin the year with goals already in place. January moves fast, and it is amazing how many organizations enter the first and second quarter of each year with fuzzy goals in place (not good).

3. Another tip regarding goal setting: SMART never gets old. Really.

4. Don’t wait until January performance reviews (if your organization holds reviews on a calendar year) to begin performance management. Begin or continue to give constructive criticism now; the “holidays” are not an excuse to put off giving solid feedback regarding weaknesses.

5. Confirm with your team who is taking time off during December and what the coverage plans are. Don’t assume that things will figure themselves out (do they ever?).

6. Yes, it is OK to show appreciation during this time of the year. A luncheon, cards, perhaps small tokens. Make it meaningful vs. make it “big.” If your team isn’t impressed by how you operate now, a substantial gift card or fancy lunch won’t make much of a difference.

7. Thanksgiving is over, yet the time to be grateful and express worthwhile praise and thanks is not. It never is over.

8. Don’t wait for the new year to begin changing your own behaviors. Just like goal setting, start doing it now.

9. Cyber Monday provides a nice opportunity to provide your team with metrics around their performance and that of the business. Do they understand the “numbers” behind what they do—and how their work affects financial results?

10. Holiday parties are not the time to loosen up. There is no “what happens here stays here” in terms of holiday celebrations. Even in a festive setting, you are under a different microscope than your team members. Sure, have fun, but don’t “party!” Yes, I’m a party-pooper. You will thank me one day.

If you are shopping on Monday, I would love to read your hot tips below in the comments below, even if they are just shopping tips.  Happy Holidays!

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