If you don’t know where you’re going, you will probably end up somewhere else – YOGI BERRA.
As a business owner, once you know where you are going and you have cleared the way, setting your goals can help you get there. But if you want to increase your chances for success, you have to do more than just setting goals. You need to write them down and implement them.
According to a study by the Ford Foundation:
• 23% of the population has no clue what they want from life and as such, they have very little.
• 67% of the population has a general idea what they want out of life, but no clue how to attain it.
• 10% of the population has specific goals
• Only 7 out of that 10 achieve their goals half the time
• The top 3% achieved the goals 89% of the time
The difference between the 3% elite group and the rest was: THEY WROTE DOWN THEIR GOALS!!! Can you believe it? Sounds too simple, right?
But it makes a whole lot sense, doesn’t it? Goal-setting is like a map – it guides us to our destination, allowing us to have a bird’s eye view of the route. We can avoid time-wasting dead ends and detours.
Dreams and wishes become goals when they are written; in some strange way writing them down materializes them and makes them probable. I like the phrase “dreams with a deadline” which I have heard used to describe goals.
These are tips to creating my maps for success:
• Get a calendar as visual aid; the mind tends to follow what is in front of it.
• Set aside an hour a day to plan. Force yourself into the habit.
• Work backwards- Focus on your long term goals and decide what short term activities will lead to your long term target.
• Plan tomorrow the night before- While you sleep, your mind will organize your time. I have a white board by my desk that I write my daily tasks on. Then at the end of the day I erase the accomplished ones and leave the undone ones for the next day. Of course the aim is to erase them all!!!
• Start the day with a mental run-down of your agenda. Then just do them! Walk with an idea notebook to jot anything that comes to mind.
• Of course keep in mind that there may be obstacles. Plan for these proactively and not re-actively. Just steer around the obstacles and keep on moving.
• Reward yourself when you achieve your goals. Give yourselves mini-incentives to go even further. But of course don’t waste time patting yourself on the back for too long…there is still lots to do!