Below are a few ideas on new year’s resolutions for web executives:
Meet with each of the senior executives in your organization or department and ask them about their primary goals for 2008. How will they know they have achieved them? How important are they to the company? What role should the Web have in supporting those goals?
Those few hours of meetings will help you, as the leader of the organization’s web team, develop a clear image of what the organization is trying to achieve this year and how you can align your team to provide the most value they can to those goals. You will also earn the respect and support of your senior team by proactively reaching out to them.
Innovation is the simple act of doing something differently in order to create new value. This might include creating greater efficiency in your processes or developing new value for your web site visitors in the form of content and functionality.
Commit yourself this year to constantly assessing opportunities for innovation in your processes and ultimate product. What areas need to change in order to meet your goals for the year? Where can you be more efficient in your content publishing processes? Can you tweak an administrative interface to be easier for staff? Can you simplify the interfaces you present to your customers?
You get the idea. Innovation should be a daily activity for any web executive.
Challenge Your Team
Challenge your web team to achieve something this year they have never done before. Make sure the challenge is aligned with your overall goals but feel free to get creative otherwise.
For example: When I used to lead a large web team, we had an organizational goal of improving the accessibility of our web site. Since standards-based design practices get you most of the way to accessibility, I challenge the team to develop a new set of templates that had “code we could be proud of” when someone viewed the source of pages. That phrase resonated with two staffers, who I then tasked to lead the project. It was our rallying cry that year and helped to make sure we kept focused on that major change to the site.
By now you may have realized that you should be doing all three of the above ideas as part of being an effective web executive. Use the New Year as an opportunity to recommit yourself and your team to these activities.