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mistakes to avoid

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mistakes to avoid

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									     setting goals




goal setting
       mistakes to avoid
                                            Setting clear goals           Cleary defining where we are    doing this poorly can actually
 JOHN CAMPBELL                                                          heading is a critical component   work against success.
 director,                                  is an important part        of every strategic or business      Here are five goal setting
                                                                        plan. And now more and            practices that hinder goal
 Australian Growth                          of being effective          more people are setting           achievement:
 Coaching                                   and successful in           clear direction and goals for
                                                                        themselves creating their own     Mistake #1 – Too big
                                            business…                   personal strategic plan.            You’ve been encouraged
                                                                          While it has become a given     to ‘dream big’ and you have,
                                            and in life.                that setting goals leads to       but your goals are so much
                                                                        successful achievement we         of a stretch that the size of
                                                                        often don’t think about how       what you want to achieve


12    businessconnectmagazine May/June 07   nswbusinesschamber.com.au
                                                                                                                                        setting goals




undermines your confidence                   success before we have even         Mistake #4 –                        Mistake #5 –
that you can achieve it.                     started. When it comes to goal      Too little focus on                 Too little support
   Some years ago US                         setting less is usually more!       implementation                        This mistake is common
management thinker, Jim                      Rather than develop a long             Getting the goal clearly         and it flows from the previous
Collins in his ground breaking               list of goals, identify the three   stated and written down is a        point. It can be hard to achieve
book, Built to Last, coined                  most critical areas of focus        great start to goal achievement     goals on our own. Somehow
the term BHAG – Big Hairy                    where making breakthrough           but it is only half (or less        we can fall into the trap of
Audacious Goal, as a way                     progress would have high            than half) the story. Nothing       thinking that achievement is
of encouraging the think big                 leverage impact for your            changes anywhere until              only real when we have done it
approach. He argued that                     professional or personal life.      actions commence and, more          on our own. In reality however
setting big-stretch, daring                  Give attention to these areas       importantly, until actions are      achieving stretch goals is much
goals was one way business                   for a certain period of time –      followed through.                   more effectively done with the
leaders could inspire their                  say a year - and then work on          Sometimes excessive time         support of others.
organisations and teams                      other areas the following year.     and energy can be spent on            To ensure our success we
to greater achievement.                                                          developing the goals and            need to look for ways in
Subsequent follow up                         Mistake #3 –                        getting clear about where           which we can enlist others to
research in Australia however                Too little ownership                things are going with less time     our cause. This might involve
questioned this1. This research                 Sometimes goal setting is        and focus given to actually         revealing your goals to others
argued that for Australians the              influenced by others. We do         making it happen. This has          and inviting them to keep
‘big-stretch’ goal was actually              things because someone has          sometimes been the case             you honest in relation to what
a turn off. If the goal is seen              indicated that we ‘should’          with organisational strategic       you want to achieve; actively
as too big and too hard people               rather than because we have         planning processes. Great           seeking advice from trusted
have a tendency to give up                   really ‘owned’ and made             time is given to creating great     mentors; or involving a coach
and see it as an impossibility.              the commitment to the goal          plans but less time is given to     to help you succeed. Either
This attitude, of course, then               ourselves. If this has happened     follow up implementation. It        way, involving others will help
becomes a self fulfilling                    it is often not long before         is not surprising that people       you increase your chances of
prophecy.                                    our commitment fades and            can become cynical about            success significantly.
   The general rule of thumb is              we are struggling to find the       such exercises.                       Goal setting is a positive
that goals need to be seen as                motivation to keep going.              As Andy Warhol is quoted         and powerful business and
achievable with some element                    If we have set goals that are    as saying… “They say time           personal practice. When
of stretch. About 80 percent                 in some ways counter to our         changes things, but you             practiced poorly though it can
chance of success seems to                   values we will be undermining       actually have to change them        de-motivate and frustrate, and
be about the right level of                  our chances of success. If our      yourself.”                          leave people feeling that they
‘stretch.’                                   broad deep down commitment             Recently the concept of          don’t even want to try. Build
                                             to our values remains, we           ‘Implementation Intentions’ has     practices that address these
Mistake #2 – Too many                        are again likely to only ‘half      emphasised the importance           concerns and you and your
   Having too many goals                     own’ any contradictory goal         of going beyond the goal to         team will enjoy seeing the
that are positioned as high                  and be unwilling to make an         give some deliberate thought        results that flow. ■
priorities merely dilutes focus              unqualified commitment to it.       towards the actions and steps
and energy. As the saying                       Ask and answer the question      required to achieve. Even just
goes… “Life is short - but it                ‘What do I really want here and     developing and articulating an        John Campbell is a Director of
is too long to be lived all                  what am I prepared to do to         outline of how and when you           Australian Growth Coaching, a
at once!”                                    get it?’ This is a great question   will go about achieving your          national coaching and consulting
                                                                                                                       practice that helps business leaders
   When we spread our focus                  to help sort out how strong         goal will help you get there.
                                                                                                                       ‘transform good intentions into
to too many priorities we are                our level of ownership is to the    Creating the ‘implementation          great results’. He can be contacted
sabotaging our chances of                    achievement of our goal. If you     intention’ mobilises you to           on 0419 489 878 or via www.
1 HUBBARD G, SAMUEL D ET AL 2002 THE FIRST   only half own it, drop it and       get moving.                           australiangrowthcoaching.com.
XI: WINNING ORGANISATIONS IN AUSTRALIA,
SYDNEY: JOHN WILEY AND SONS LTD.             work on something else.


                                                                                                       TEL: 13 26 96 businessconnectmagazine May/June 07 13

								
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