At the end of every year, I bring my family together for a family strategic planning meeting. As I wrote more extensively about in this blog post, family strategic planning sets direction, helps manage family resources, and sets family members up for success.
This is why we take the time to go out of town, recharge and relax, before heading into a meeting that allows us to revisit what we’ve done in the past and where we plan to go, moving forward. Ideally, the goals set at the strategic family planning meeting are then followed up at monthly family meetings that allow family members to discuss issues and incidents that are important to then, celebrate the wins, learn from the losses, and plan adequately for the future.
This year, however, was a little different. The family voiced out that the core values that we identified–godliness, respect, integrity, perseverance, and excellence–seemed to be driven by performance, and left little room for grace.
“Let’s do a little design thinking,” Catherine, my wife, suggested, “and revisit the core values.”
I was initially hesitant–my vision of core values saw them as values that would stand the test of time, rather like La Salle’s Religio, Mores et Cultura–but the feedback that it was high-pressure and performance-driven could not be ignored. So Caths led us in a Design Thinking exercise that gave us the opportunity to write down different values that were important to each of us. We then categorized them together into groups of similar intention, and grace, God-centered, joy, respect, and excellence were the values that stood out.
We then wordsmithed these values into more tangible content that seemed more relatable and achievable, and these are the results.
In 2018, the Deen family will endeavor to live out:
– Grace-Filled Living
– A God-Centered Lifestyle
– A Joyful Disposition
– Respect in All Relationships
– The Pursuit of Excellence
RESOURCES! If you’d like to try strategic planning for your family, here’s a sample family strategic planning template (in Excel format) that you can use, and here’s a sample family meeting template that you can use for your monthly meetings. Just replace the section on Family Values with your own, or feel free to adapt ours to suit your family’s needs. Happy new year from the Deens!