Did you know that only 3% of the world’s population has clear, well written and articulate goals. This 3% of the world’s population accomplishes 10 times more, than others who do not have goals at all; they have 10 times more success in whatever they do and earn 10 times more than people who do not have goals. This was a study conducted by Harvard in 1979 for the MBA batch of students.
Just 3%? A very small percentage right?
In spite of such proof of success, most people don’t have clear, measurable, time-bounded goals that they work toward.
This got me wondering and reading about goals and success and I recently read somewhere that there were people who said, “No need to write goals, but have it in your mind”. I wonder then, with 1500 thoughts bombarding your mind every single minute, how can one have clear goals? They would only be vague & confusing. You don’t just start building house by landing up one morning with a truck load of sand, cement and tools. You need to have a blue print drawn. And then there are people who said, yes, I know having and setting goals is important now how do I write them down. What actions do I take, how do I track it, measure it and keep going without losing steam.
The good news is Goal Setting is a skill that can be learnt, people in the 3% club were not born with this skill, they have also learnt it, just like how you learnt to drive a car, manage time, climb a mountain, learnt to sell / or cycle for that matter. Once you learn the skill, you get to practice and practice makes one perfect.
Recently I had the opportunity to deliver a personal effectiveness program to the sales team of Mahindra car showroom. I had no experience in training retail showroom employees. I volunteered to meet some of them to prepare for my course content. My first meeting was with the Top Performer whose target was to sell 20 cars every month and he had been achieving the target consistently month after month. My first question to this youngster was:
How do you do it every month?
What is it that drives you?
He said “Ma’am I have goals and dreams and a system to achieve them which I have learnt. And I just know I have to achieve them.” He could have said I need to pay my bills or earn a promotion. But the fact remains that he had made a commitment to his goals. His passion was visible.
So by quoting this small experience, I am trying to say is that one need not be inspired only by the goals of eminent business leaders like Warren Buffet or Mark Zuckerberg or the Ambanis and their goals. Consider this, even a Sr. Sales Executive of a Car Showroom also has goals; goals so big that he wanted to achieve them, come what may. He is doing a bloody good job at it.
So why not us….
In my journey of research, I came to think of these 5 simple steps, to help one get what they really, really really ….WANT.
Step 1: Decide what you want, really dig deep and find out everything you want your business to achieve for you. Experts on the science of success know that the brain is a goal-seeking organism. Whatever goal you give to your subconscious mind, it will work night and day to achieve it.
Step 2: SMART goals and not a WISH. The goals you set also need to have some qualities, they need to be honest and written in the positive. It needs to be Specific . Include details such as when they will happen, where they will happen, how much you’ll make, what model you’ll buy, what size it will be, and so on. If you said, “I want financial freedom, to be able to clear all my bills”, then it’s not a GOAL it’s a WISH. How about saying, “By end of Oct 2016 I want to have INR5,00,000 to be able to acquire 3 months inventory” This is Specific, Measurable and Time Bound. Another important quality of Goals is that it needs to be Attainable; one cannot set a goal that they want to be earning INR20lks of profit every month, when they haven’t even achieved that in the whole of last year. Begin with small steps, such as increasing your monthly income by 25 percent. Once your first goal is met, you can reach for larger ones Last but not the least, it needs to be Relevant – WHY is it your goal? Why do you want to achieve it, they say when the WHY is strong enough the How to DO follows. If your business doesn’t meet your personal goals, you probably won’t be happy waking up each morning and trying to make the business a success.
Step 3: Write them down, a good goal is not just something you visualize feel or hear it happening, but is also something that you write down, that helps you commit to it. You may draw a picture the way you picture it or make a collage or even http://makeavisionboard.com/ for yourself of all the things you really, really, really want. A goal can fulfil any of these aspirations such as – Financial, health, family, career growth, social, travel and personal goals. Remember they need to follow the SMART principle- Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Time Bound. Now being the Olympic season, we all know the Olympic athletes spend an enormous amount of time training for their events. Do you know they don’t just do physical training, what they also do is Mental training, where they condition their brain and that helps them visualize their goal. This simple technique helps your brain know what to look out for.
Step 4 Commit to whatever it takes…underline this in bold. Many a times, we don’t know, what is the price one is willing to pay to get to their goals? While it is very important to write goals down, what is more important is to keep doing things everyday without losing steam. As an entrepreneur, too often we drown ourselves into transactions and forget to focus on key activities which really need only our and only our time. This drains our battery and will power, to do what is key, to keep going after our goals. Remember:-
The MAIN thing is to keep the Main thing the MAIN Thing
Step5: Take action – What does it take to achieve those goals? A short story goes this way, there was once a man who wanted to win a lottery and he prayed to all the Gods (the old ones and the new) night and day to win it and yet every week someone else would win. Angered and frustrated he looks heavenwards and asks the almighty why is he not being recognized for his devotion and that it was unfair. Following which there was a thunder and a lightning and a voice spoke to him which said, “for god’s sake please go buy the lottery ticket first”. So make a beginning, don’t go to bed tonight until you have written down those goals.
Author Akanksha Narang
Soft Skills Trainer,
Coach and HR Advisor NLP Practitioner