The importance of goals
I talk a lot about the importance of having goals and I can probably hear the groaning as you read this right now!
But the reason you hear this one so often is because it's true.
Now there's a story that goes around that you may have heard about a class at Harvard/Yale. The story goes that those students who set goals at the beginning of their careers achieved much, much more than those that didn't.
Well, I've tried to find out whether the story's true and have failed miserably.
However, I did come across a story about a real study with 267 participants.
So the experiment went like this:
There were 5 groups with different instructions:
- Group 1: Just 'think' about your goals
- Group 2: Write your goals down
- Group 3: Write your goals down and put an action against each goal
- Group 4: Write your goals down and put an action against each goal and send your goals to a friend
- Group 5: Write your goals down and put an action against each goal and send your goals to a friend, and send your friend a progress report
And which group did best?
No prizes for guessing group 5. And that's because written goals together with accountability are your best chance of success.
So sit down with a blank bit of paper and start to draw out what your business journey will look like. Put in some goals that you want to achieve in the short term and in the long term.
For the short-term I normally suggest clients put what they'd like to achieve in the next month, the next 3 months and the next year.
And for the long-term think about the next 5 years and the next 10 years.
Make your goals BHAGs - Big Hairy Audacious Goals (this comes from the book 'Built to Last: Successful Habits Of Visionary Companies). And the more emotionally you connect with your goals, the more likely you are to achieve them.
So go ahead - get those goals written down and get yourself an accountability buddy.
You'll be amazed at the difference it makes.