Reflection gives us an opportunity to both look back on what happened and think about (and name) where we want to go in the future.
Through this process, we identify where we’ve focused our time and energy, what was and is important to us, and what we’ve learned.
When we come together with our team and share our reflections, we seize the opportunity to build alignment, identify and prioritize shared goals, and recognize ways to work better together.
To help you and your team jumpstart the process of looking back and looking forward, we’ve created a resource full of reflection questions. Read on for a preview of what’s inside.
Reflect, share, and prepare for next project or year
These reflection questions was designed to help teams plan for the new year by looking back at the previous year.
For teams, this is a great opportunity to wrap up the year, reset, realign, and get everyone on the same page as you set off to make the most of a new year.
For managers who will be creating new goals and OKRs, leading your team through personal reflections, team reflections, and reflections for leaders will be incredibly helpful.
The process will allow you to further elicit feedback from your team so you can better plan according to their needs and goals.
- On a scale of 1-10, how would you rate the past year?
- What was a time this past year when you felt like you were at your best
- Name 3 things that gave you energy and 3 things that drained
- Do you notice any themes or commonalities in what you listed?
- What's something you changed your mind about this past year?
- Name 3 things you're grateful for this year — work-related or not.
- Create a plan: What are some ways you can carve out more time to focus on the things that energize you?
Goals and Accomplishments
- What do you want to do more of in the new year? What will you do less of?
- What achievement are you most proud of?
- Name something you faced head on and something you shied away from.
- What do you notice about these things? Why do you think you approached those situations differently?
- What was a goal that you followed through on or partially followed through on?
- Was there a reason you moved away from these goals? What, if anything, got in your way?
- Share an example of a personal risk that you took this year that paid off
- How might you apply what you learned from that experience to future situations?
- Create a plan: Write out 1-3 goals for yourself in your work this year. For each one, what are 1-2 things that can help you get there?
Personal Learning & Development Questions
- What's a new discovery you made this year?
- What impact has that discovery had on your day-to-day life and work?
- What's a skill you have gained confidence with in the last year?
- What was the source of that growth in confidence? Was it internal or external? A shift in your mindset or actions? A combination?
- If you could give yourself one piece of advice last year at this time, what would it be?
- Why are those themes meaningful to you?
- Create your plan: Pick a book, podcast, or course to check out in the new year to support you in your daily work.
- What's something new you'd like to learn or try in the new year? Name 1-2 ways you can hold yourself accountable to this goal.
Team Learning & Development Reflection Questions
- What were your team's top 3 priorities this year?
- Do you feel that you were spending time on the right things?
- Name 3 highlights from the year and 3 lowlights.
- What did your team do this past year that had the most meaningful that impact?
- What team deliverable are you proud of? Why is it something you're proud of?
- Name a noble failure from this past year and what did you learn?
- What goals did you make progress on?
- What factors (internal or external, day-to-day or big-picture) do you think contributed to that progress or lack thereof?
- What's 1 risk your team took together this year that paid off?
- How did you decide to take that risk? Why do you think the risk worked so well for your team?
- Create a plan: What does your team need to be successful in working towards its goals this year? How can you work together to make sure that happens?
- Commit to 2 things you'll do more of as a team and 2 things you'll do less of in the year ahead.
Ways of Working Reflection Questions
- What were some notable decisions that happened on your team this year?
- Did your team try any new technology tools or processes this past year?
- What was our meeting load like this year?
- What do you wish had been an email instead?
- What team communication channel felt the most valuable this year?
- What's one communication channel you'd like to change?
- When you have a question about a project, where do you go to get an answer?
- What's something you feel like you spend too much time on?
- Why do you think the amount of time or effort you spend on that task/activity doesn't feel worthwhile?
- Create a plan: Pick a meeting on your team's calendar that you'd like to make more effective in the new year and outline 1-2 changes you can try to help you get there.
- What are 2 areas your team can focus on (communication, meetings, tools, etc.) to improve ways of working in the year ahead? How might you build on the momentum of what worked well last year to help you get there?
Relationships & colleagues at work
- What's your most enjoyable relationship at work? What about one that causes you stress or concern?
- How might your own actions and mindset be affecting those work relationships?
- What was something you asked for help in last year and that made you glad you asked?
- Share an example of a misunderstanding you had in the past year.
- Were you a mentor or mentee to anyone?
- How would your teammates describe your collaboration style?
- How did you help your teammates achieve their goals? How did you hinder them?
- Are there any common threads you're noticing? What might this tell you about your own strengths and opportunities for growth?
- What would make you feel more fulfilled in your work relationships?
- Create your plan: How will you foster stronger relationships with your colleagues this year?
- Commit to 1-3 specific activities you'll do towards this goal.
- Name 1 new way you can support your teammates in the new year and 1 way they can support you.
Your working style reflection questions
- What was a new habit or routine you created that's improved your efficiency at work?
- When did you feel most productive? What factors (environmental, team, or otherwise) contributed to your productivity?
- How much focus time did you have? What pulled you away from focus?
- During busy months, how did you choose what to approach?
- Name 1 commitment you upheld and 1 that fell through the cracks.
- What helped you stand by your commitments?
- Describe a time this past year when you felt truly connected to the work
- Create your plan: What's 1 thing you could change to find more focus time, balance, or connection to your work in the new year?
- With your work style in mind, what do you need to set yourself up for success in the year ahead?
Tips for using the reflection questions
Here are some quick tips to help you set expectations for yourself and your team:
- You don’t have to answer everything
- Embrace vulnerability and honesty
- Go with your gut
- Think big and small
- Carve out dedicated time
- Be gentle with yourself and others
We hope these reflection questions help you arrive at a deeper understanding of what to focus on next to grow as individuals and as a team.
How Range can help with your team building
Range is a team communication tool for check-ins and meeting management. You can reduce meeting load by keeping every team member informed, and easily share your work plans and what you accomplished.
With Range, you’ll free up time and eliminate unnecessary meetings with a balance of asynchronous check-ins and real-time meeting collaboration, including agendas and notes.
Range helps teams connect as people, not just employees, building habits that keep teams effective and engaged.
- Create accountability by sharing information and updates across the team
- Answer icebreaker questions in async check-ins and in your meetings
- Easily track how daily work connects to higher-level goals
- Set a goal for metrics, objectives, and KPIs
- With hashtags, see all artifacts, updates, and day-to-day progress in one place
- Share goal updates with leaders via Slack or email