New Year resolutions have a bad rep mainly because most people use a flawed model. If you have goals you want to achieve, you need an action plan to bring your desires to life.
Let’s face it: making a wish list isn’t going to do you any good. So now that we are into the new year, let’s take a minute to look at the how you can actually achieve your business goals to make this year count.
Wishes VS. Goals
Time to get real guys, it’s highly unlikely that you have a fairy godmother just waiting until your most dismal moment to sweep in and wave a magic wand.
What is the difference between a wish and a goal?
Action is what separates the naysayers and the achievers.
The question is: how do you go from desire to action?
It starts with “reverse engineering” your goals to create an action plan.
Reverse engineering just means that once you identify the end point, you break down the action steps that are necessary to achieve your goal.
Your action plan is crucial if you want to succeed.
This means that, for instance, if you have the goal to make more money this year, you need to pinpoint what you are going to do to make more money.
Want to learn a new skill? Expand your network of connections? Start by identifying your desires and then make an action plan to achieve your goals.
How To Make Your Action Plan
1) SWOT Analysis: This is above and beyond one of my absolute most preferred methods to achieve business goals. I tend to have an abundance of new ideas and get caught up in the many different directions.
The SWOT analysis gives entrepreneurs a focus and direction to identify the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats to make smart goals for your business. Try doing a SWOT with a partner for best results and be sure to write down your ideas before you begin brainstorming.
In case you aren’t sure, a SWOT analysis is fairly straightforward: Strengths and Weaknesses focus on internal operations, such as the specifics of your organization (i.e. your team, resources, tools, etc.), while Opportunities and Threats aspects focus on external conditions.
This is the absolute best method to really hone in on your business to pursue growth oriented solutions. If you haven’t completed a SWOT before, find out more here.
2) Daily Habits: The most important part of your action plan is that you focus on what you are going to DO. Never focus on the negative aspects when you are making an action plan.
For example, if you do want to learn a new skill, make yourself a realistic schedule that you can stick to. Personally, I have found that it is better to commit to a daily habit than a sporadic effort so I always make sure that I devote at least 30 minutes or more to new training and development.
The world moves fast and to keep up with the latest technology, market changes and new tools, it’s a smart idea to pencil out the time to do so. Even if you are only starting with 10 minutes a day, it is more likely that you will stick to your plans if it is achievable and regularly part of your routine.
So don’t get down by New Year resolutions that didn’t pan out, take it as a challenge to do more this time around. I love the new year because it’s another opportunity to take it up a notch – and that is exactly what I intend to do this year.