The goal at the end of the rainbow

One of my clients (let’s call him Mike), a partner of a small to medium-sized accountancy firm, says he made £1m extra sales purely by following some simple time management and goal-setting tips.

Last month I wrote about time management, but goal setting is just as important, and when people start setting goals they usually achieve equivalent results to Mike.

To start, be really specific and state your goal simply. Ask yourself, what is the last thing that has to happen for you to know you have achieved your goal – what will you and others see, hear and feel?

Once you have the answer, visualise it clearly and then work towards it in a focused way. That’s what sports champions do, so why not business champions?

Make sure it really is what you want. Many people strive for things that are not what they want deep down (even though their boss or shareholders may), and then wonder why they either do not achieve it, or become ill in the process. If it is what you want, there is very little, if any, struggle.

Linked to this, make sure the goal you set is what the people around you would want for you. For example, your partner, family and colleagues.

If it is not, they will get in the way somehow. If it is, they will support you in achieving it.

Believe you can do it. If you do not think you can, tweak your goal, or do whatever it takes to change your belief. Have others done it? How did they do it? What do I or we need to do differently?

Set a clear date for achievement; not ‘within five years’, but ‘by 31 December 2008’.

Finally, make your goal a statement of what you want, rather than what you do not want. ‘Not having fallen from the FTSE100’ is different from ‘being a FTSE100 company’ – it is a change of mindset and focus.

As Mike found out, by incorporating the above principles into his goal setting, and then taking focused action, he achieved dramatically improved business results. You can too.

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