Setting goals and planning to achieve them

I wrote a few days ago about Michael Owen having the goal of making the England squad for the 2010 World Cup, and if you look at most successful people they too have goals that they strive to achieve.

Most research conducted in looking at how and why businesses and individuals are successful indicates that having specific goals and a plan on how to achieve them is a major factor in achieving that success.

The outcome of much of the research is that you need to have SMART goals/objectives/targets, i.e. the goals you need to set yourself are:

S specific
M measurable
A achievable
R realistic
T time specific

“I want to increase sales” is not a SMART objective, whereas “! want to be selling an extra 4 mortgages a month by the end of 2009” is a SMART objective:

S specific – an extra 4 mortgage sales a month
M measurable – 4 mortgages a month over and above current mortgage sales
A achievable – is it realistic to plan to sell 1 more mortgage a week?
R realistic – bearing in mind the manpower and man hours required to sell the extra mortgage deals, is this feasible?
T time specific – by when does this need to be achieved

Having set a SMART objective it is then easier to work backwards and plan how this can be achieved. If you know you need to see 4 people to sell one extra mortgage and it takes you 5 calls to make one appointment, you can work out that you need to make 20 extra calls to make one extra sale.

To make 4 extra sales you therefore are likely to need to make 80 extra calls over the course of the month. Over a 20 day month you therefore need to set aside time to make 4 extra calls a day. If each call takes 5 minutes you are looking at finding an extra 20 minutes a day. Factor in 10 minutes to make notes on the calls, you now need to find an extra half hour per day to make the additional appointments to make the extra sale this week.

Similar exercises will help you work out how much extra time you need to find for the appointments, filling in the paperwork and so.

These are the kind of planning activities undertaken by those who consistently stretch themselves and achieve success in what they do.

This month we have celebrated the achievement of perhaps the best example of goal setting and planning to achieve that goal that mankind has ever seen….

September 12th 1962

July 20th 1969

Who knows what you can achieve if you set your SMART goal and plan how you intend to achieve it?

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