So it’s a new year or a new decade even, depending on which method of calculation that you adopt!?
I bet you have already spent time reviewing last year, making resolutions and commitments for this year and in convincing yourself that THIS year will be the one. The one that delivers the returns. The one that you will face your demons and break out of that comfort zone. The one that you deserve. The one you have been working and waiting for; so despite the VAT rise, the weather and the economic climate, this year is yours for the taking.
Excellent. Me too.
I would just present something to you before you embark upon your exciting and inspiring journey.
First, three questions;
Are you sure that everything that you do will lead you to these ends?
How will you know when you achieve this success?
Are you absolutely sure of how you will be and feel when you get there?
There are 2 elements that are critical to answering the above questions positively and confidently. Firstly, you have to have absolute FAITH in your plan and secondly, you have to have a system to make the MOST of all your efforts. There are millions of self-help schemes available. There are thousands of business guru’s, books and websites offering solutions to business problems; from stroppy staff to social media strategy, from leadership to the law of attraction. There is doubtless value in many of these tools but that is what they are, tools and techniques. The problem with all of this information is that it is disparate. There is no overall system that ensures that all these tools support your plan.
So, how to ensure that all your effort is focussed and effective?
You need a system. It is as simple as that. It is non-negotiable. It is critical. It is the first and most important investment of your time and energy because without it, all other activities, expenditure and effort could be wasted and you will be in the same place next December as you were in last. I have a system and it works. Guaranteed.
I call it my MOST system.
It starts with your Mission. I do not care what your mission is, per se, but I do know that unless it is constructed in a way that incorporates your values, inspires you every day and is authentic to you and your unique proposition then it is pointless; just cosmetic window dressing for your business.
Next, your objectives. I am certain that you have already set goals and objectives. Good. Many of you may have adopted the SMART process and feel that this will be enough to keep you on track. It may well be. But exactly how do these objectives support your mission? How much do they consistently and genuinely move you towards your mission? How can/do you measure and review them. If your mission is the “end game”, your objectives should do nothing but help you to get there. Integrated, effective, measurable and mission-bound; they are the only objectives worth having.
Next, Strategy. This is where you choose how to deliver your objectives and where you can pick which personal and business tools and techniques best serve you. Your strategies are variable and unique but must be completely supportive of your objectives. There may be several per objective but not too many. Focus and integration are critical to success. Only when your mission inspires you and your objectives let you track progress can your particular strategies be MOST effective.
Finally, your tactics or tasks. These are your daily actions and without action, all your other efforts are wasted. Every single task needs to be part of your strategy. Every single thing that you do needs to take you towards your objectives. Every single tasks needs to inspire you to reach your end point; your mission. This may sound cold and even daunting but your tasks can, and should, include “down-time”. Periods of reconciliation and reflection. Essential to your tactics is ‘you‘ time. So, now that you have a flavour of this system, what next? Well, you have to believe. You have to believe that it works. I can confirm that this system has and does work so the only thing missing is your belief in yourself. I have worked with some wonderful business and personal coaches and mentors. I have completed my NLP and EFT basic programs. I have read and learned extensively from some of the best around and one thing is consistently present in all of these individuals; they believe. This belief carries them through the bad times and lets them know that they deserve the good times. Do you truly believe?
I admit to my own periods of doubt. There have been times when the World seemed to conspire against me and I was ready to pack it all in. What got/gets me through? A simple word. FAITH.
In this context I do not mean some esoteric abstraction in the spiritual realm (this may well be something that you can turn to) but is a simple acronym that you can use to remind you of your path. It can be amended for your own application and you may even change the word altogether but I have found it particularly effective:
F = Flexibility.
Whatever your plans and schemes there will be curve-balls and opportunities, planned activities and spontaneous events. Be flexible but do not lose focus. It is your mission that is important and the road towards it may change. Check your Sat-Nav but be flexible on your route.
A = Authenticity.
This is why your mission is your own and why your objectives are yours for the measuring. It is so important that you can walk your talk in all aspects of your life and most particularly within the business world. Be your authentic self and people will notice.
I = Inspiration.
If your work does not inspire you, change it. It’s that simple. Find what you love and do it. You will need inspiration to get up, apply yourself daily and to appreciate the rewards of your labour. If you are not inspired, think again.
T = Time.
As much as we would wish to we cannot control time. What we can do is manage our time effectively (and for this we need a system!) but we have to accept that unless we are Dr Who, time is beyond our control. When we accept that not everyone will come back to us when we wish and that projects get delayed and that spontaneity is a good thing, time becomes our friend. Time and flexibility are very much inter-related.
H = Happiness.
This may seem somewhat out of context but think about it. If you are not happy doing what it is that you do then why continue? If you are unable to find happiness in your work then how much more difficult is it to be happy outside of your job? You deserve to be happy and happiness is not simply a function of success or financial reward. Find happiness in as much as you can. People like happy people and we only ever do business with people so try it, you will definitely feel better about your own lot and will probably attract more positive opportunities along the way.
You can of course come up with your own words for your own FAITH. You may create an acronym of your own but take it from me, when you have faith in yourself and believe in your system, I guarantee that success will follow.
Have a fantastic, inspiring 2011, make the MOST of your business and believe. If you want help in making the MOST of 2011, please contact me. I guarantee that it will change you and your business.