A Proven Method That Will Help You Accomplish a Big Goal… Automatically
I have a tendency to get in the way of my own success. However, I implemented a system that removed me – i.e. my head trash – from the process. Now I use a system that is an autopilot. Now I coast to the end.
I’ve always hated the saying “if you don’t plan to succeed, you automatically plan to fail.” That was so much pressure. As if I can just sit down with a pen and some paper and plan myself to more time, money and better health!?! Well, I actually stepped out of my comfort zone and on faith implemented a method that was recommended to me by many successful people through the years and I’m happy to report that…. IT WORKS. It’s a process that doesn’t make me have to be self disciplined (other than just initially committing to do it). Also, it’s not limited to just one goal. I now use this process for all the goals of my life.
1. Determine the High Impact Situations You Need More Of
Every accomplished goal had a series of situations that happened before the end result was realized. Most likely you know exactly what these high impact situations you need more of are. Some examples are:
- face to face meetings with decision makers
- telephone conversations
- high impact situations for people you manage
High impact situations involve the help of somebody else and which you can’t directly control and is usually the step right before, or very close to, the realization of the goal. Concentrate on only a few.
2. List the Repetitive Activities that Lead to High Impact Situations
For the job seeker, sending out resumes and filling out online job applications will lead to more interviews. For the salesperson, activities like outbound calling and networking with centers of influence will be good things to do that will lead to more face to face meetings with decision makers, right? Perhaps the CEO of a company who’s tasked with turning around poor sales should be consistently interviewing sales consultants, or masterminding with other CEO’s. Whatever the high impact situations you need more of, ask yourself “what activities should I be doing consistently that will ultimately help accomplish more of those situations?”
List as many activities that would lead to high impact situations that you can think of and then pick no more than five activities that YOU can do – i.e. what you can control. For instance, while it would be beneficial for the job seeker to have more interviews, the job seeker can’t control how many interviews he/she will get invited to. However, the job seeker can send letters, spend 15 minutes improving the resume, or applying for jobs. Some examples might include:
- outbound phone calls (dials)
- networking events
- tweets, facebook posts, linkedin introductions
- blog posts
- correspondence sent
- job application
Perhaps you don’t know what the BEST activities are. That’s okay. Don’t get hung up. Through this process the most rewarding activities for you will surface to the top from our process of tracking results (explained below). Just get down a few.
3. Create a Weighted Point System
If everyday I do the repetitive activities that leads to the important high-impact situations, will I not be making significant progress to accomplish my goal? In the past, my problem was not knowing how many activities to do, and I would often not get much done, of any significance anyway. At the very least, my lack of a system was extremely inefficient, not to mention disheartened at knowing I was not accomplishing anything. I never knew how much work was enough. Today, my sales and marketing activities goal is to get 25 points per day and I weight and assign all of my activities according to the type of results I get. For instance, while cold calls are proven and would be able to generate sales leads for me, I would have to make a lot more of them to equal the value of a meeting with somebody face to face. So, now I get 5 points for meeting with somebody, and only 1 point for a dial (the act of trying to reach somebody on the phone), and 2 points for a (meaningful) phone conversation. And when I attend a networking event – an activity I frequently found myself not doing frequently enough – I now get 4 points; a strongly weighted activity.
Look over your list of repetitive activities that leads to the important high-impact situations and assign points to those activities that would add up to 25 points. However, make sure you’re properly balancing the scoring system so that you’re not done for the day after one phone call, and likewise, you can be done early if you’ve honestly put in a respectable amount of work. Here is my list of my activities and their points:
- 1 pt – review vision board
- 1 pt – dial/tweet/fb post/email
- 3 pts – conversation (phone, twitter, fb)
- 5 pts – face to face meeting
- 3 pts – call/meeting scheduled
- 4 pts – networking event
- 4 pts – marketing asset created (blog post/sales proposal)
- 2 pts – give freely/help somebody
Want to earn some extra points and help balance out your life a little bit? Put down “exercise/healthy eating” as one of your activities and give yourself some nominal points for either working out or staying on a healthy diet for that day. Being healthy leads to the best you and you should be rewarded for it! In my 25 per day point system I give myself 2 points.
4. If You Track It, You’ll Do It!
So you’ve determined what activities you need to do consistently that leads to important high-impact situations. You’ve also created a way that will help you know how much you should be doing on a daily basis to continually move your toward accomplishing your goal. Now we have to actually get to work, which was something I’ve tended to fight. Wouldn’t it would be great if we could drink some sort of an elixir everyday that somehow made us wake up at 2 in the afternoon with all of our activities completed? Well, I haven’t found one yet, and would be concerned for my health even if there was. However, my tracking sheet is what I use now and is just as effective.
The tracking sheet is a one page document I print every Monday morning and put right in front of my on my desk (important). For every activity I do I track. When I have 25 points accumulated for the day, I’m done. The track-it sheet is merely a spreadsheet with your activities listed vertically on the left, and the day of the week across to the top. Make it so that you can print it out on one page.
I recommend you add to the tracking mechanism “success metrics”. Examples of my success metrics are:
- nibble (somebody who raises their hand for my offering)
- new opportunity
- no/killed opportunity (yes, getting a “no” is good)
- future call
- money event
The most important part is that you have your tracking mechanism in front of you at all times because you will find that you will naturally do your work without having to think about it. So every Monday morning you should print out your “Track-It Sheet” and put it right in front of you. Now your activities get done without having to beat yourself up!
Download My Track-It Sheet
If you’ve had troubles getting to a major goal because you know you aren’t focused on the activities you need to do to get you there, I recommend trying this “Success Trap”. Let me know how it works. How have you changed it to work better? I’d love to hear from you!