I Got A Problem Y’all:
Last year was a bust for me. I missed every goal I set at work and in my personal life. Luckily everyone in my department seemed to struggle this past year, so I don’t feel at risk for any adverse action. But I feel torn between setting my personal growth goals at work too low, just so I can achieve them. Or being more aggressive in an attempt to stand out from the crowd. I had the same kind of failures in my personal life goals. I wanted to find more work/life balance with my time, lose some weight, and stop feeling so stressed. Instead, I am more stressed over not completing the goals, which in turn is wasting my time and causing me to gain more weight. I’m all out of steam and don’t know what to do next. Can you help? — TEN YARDS SHORT
HI TEN YARDS SHORT: Thank you for your question, and we are confident we can help you start moving to action. As you know, professional performance goals are often a mixture of items we can and cannot control. When we are given regional, district, or department outcome-based goals, those require us to support the team by playing our part, but in many situations the results are ultimately beyond our span of control. The personal development goals, on the other hand, are often entirely in our control and deserve our attention when we develop them.
The first step is to determine where to focus our efforts. Are you looking for a promotion, more responsibility, or a complete change in direction? This will help define your focus. Now think about the skills, tools, and connections required to achieve those goals. Which ones do you currently possess and which are still needed? Don’t underestimate the value of the connections piece…it’s all about relationships.
Now rank those needs in order of difficulty. How long will it take to achieve them and which ones will have the most significant impact on your progress? At this point, you should begin to see a clear path and understand what is achievable based on the timeline, in conjunction with available resources. Let’s reframe our perspective a little and see if we can make this less overwhelming. The ultimate goal may put you at the center of attention…but is not achievable in a calendar year and will leave you feeling defeated again. What if you focused on the individual needs that are still required as your goals versus the ultimate goal? You now have obtainable milestones that will help you improve professionally in the current year and will move you closer towards your final destination. Guess what you have also accomplished with the process? If you participate in a 360° style performance review process, you have just developed several goal statements for your personal objectives.
Just a few housekeeping items that will help you stay focused. 1) Create a timeline that includes progress milestones and celebrations. Incorporate reminders in your personal communication systems (calendar, phone, etc.) 2) Find a mentor, colleague, friend, or family member who wants to help you stay on track. You will need them on the tough days when you are ready to give in. They can help you resist and persist. 3) Last but not least…self-care. Make time to take care of you. A well-rested version of you will accomplish much more than the depleted and overwhelmed one.
You can apply this same process to personal goals. Identify the goal. Connect the skills, tools, and support system required to achieve the goal. Organize the timeline, include milestones and celebration. Sprinkle in a little self-care love…And Move those Ideas to Action. You are going to find yourself in the endzone in no time flat.
Do you have a problem and want to see if we can help? We would love to hear from you and help Move your Ideas to Action. Email us at: Info@bscorbettconsulting.com