The 12 Week Year – Brian P. Moran, Michael Lennington Book Summary

The 12 Week Year – Brian P. Moran, Michael Lennington | Free Book Summary

The 12 Week Year – Brian P. Moran, Michael Lennington

The physical universe will not respond to your desires, no matter how passionate or intense they are. The one thing that moves the universe is action. An ounce of action is worth a ton of theory.

Rethinking Time: Boost Your Performance In The Short Term

Forget about the 12 month year and instead focus on the 12 Week Year. Why? Because you can get more done in 12 weeks than in 12 months with the right mindset, goals, and strategy.

Subscribe to Miniwise Newsletter (Free!)

Miniwise newsletter brings you one great bite-sized idea every day, curated from world's best non-fiction books, articles, podcasts..and more. An entire new world in just 5 minutes!


To execute successfully, it is important to have a strong emotional connection to the outcome.

Without a compelling reason to choose otherwise, most people will take comfortable actions over uncomfortable ones.

Free book, podcast summaries

One Week At A Time

The actions that we take create long-term results. While we plan for the future, we act on the day.

If you want to be truly effective, your daily activities must align with your long-term vision, strategies, and tactics.


A weekly plan will translate your 12-week plan into daily and weekly action. Your weekly plan should cover your strategies and priorities.

Your long term and short term tasks and your commitments in the context of time.

In God we trust; all others must bring data.

Working With Intentionality

Your supply of time is completely inelastic and perishable.

When you are not purposeful about how you spend your time, you leave results to chance.

Block out regular time each week to deal with strategically important tasks. Examples of performance time:


  • Strategic blocks. A three-hour block of uninterrupted time that is scheduled into each week
  • Buffer blocks. Time set aside to deal with all the unplanned and low-value activities like email and voicemail
  • Break out blocks. Time for resting and reflection

Accountability And Ownership

Accountability is accepting that you have a choice. That everything that you do in life is a choice. 

It is small thinking to see accountability as a have-to rather than a choice.

With such a mentality you will only produce a minimum of results.


When you understand that true accountability is about choice and taking ownership of your choices, everything changes. You move from resistance to empowerment, from limits to possibilities, and from mediocrity to greatness.

Interest Vs Commitment

Commitments improve relationships, strengthen integrity, and build self-esteem. Commitment is a state of being bound emotionally and intellectually to a course of action.

The ability to keep commitments is fundamental to effective execution. The difference between interest and commitment is that we only do the things we are interested in when we feel like it. But with commitment, we make no excuses.

Keys To A Successful Commitment

Strong desire. A clear and personally compelling reason will make you do things

Keystone actions. A few core activities account for a majority of your results

Count the costs. Counting the costs means being ready to commit time, resources, and so on

Act on commitments, not feelings. If you learn to do the things that you need to do despite your feelings, you will surely be successful

Be Here Now

To achieve life balance, you need to be purposeful in how you spend your time, energy, and effort.

When our attention is spread over various subjects and conversations, we apply very little of ourselves to any individual activity. This can result in feelings of being burned out, exhausted, frustrated, and disconnected.

To make the most of your time, be present in the moment. Your thinking will be clear, and decisions will come easily.

You can neither change the past nor act in the future. All you have is the eternal, right now.

The Execution System

The eight elements that are fundamental to high performance are:

  1. Vision
  2. Planning
  3. Process control
  4. Measurement
  5. Time use
  6. Accountability
  7. Commitment
  8. Greatness at the moment

Applying the 12 Week Year will be uncomfortable because change is uncomfortable.

Changing Behaviour: The Five Stages

  1. Uninformed optimism. This is the first stage and the most exciting as we imagine all the benefits that we are going to get from the change.
  2. Informed pessimism. This stage is characterized by a shift into negative emotions.
  3. The valley of despair. Most people give up at this stage. They abandon the reason they wanted to change in the first place
  4. Informed optimism. The likelihood of success at this stage is higher. The benefits of your actions start to bear fruit
  5. Success and fulfilment. This is the stage where you complete the cycle and enjoy the full benefits of the change process.
Get the book!

Sign Up for nextbigwhat newsletter

The smartest newsletter, partly written by AI.

Download, the short news app for busy professionals