2015 is right around the corner and typically the New Year brings about a big focus on goals; at both the individual and corporate levels. When it comes to company planning, in our work facilitating strategic goal sessions, we’ve discovered time and again that while there are many variables when formulating corporate objectives, there are three truisms that better guarantee success when it comes to execution.
Less Is More. According to a study found in the 4 Disciplines of Execution by Stephen Covey, the lower the number of goals set, the better the odds of achieving all identified: simply put, once a company sets more than four goals, they’ll likely complete only one and if there are more than ten priorities set, typically none of them are actually achieved. So what’s the ideal number? According to Covey, either two or three. Which makes sense when a realistic assessment of time, money and resources are considered. In our work we have found when organizations take a laser beam focus on achieving two “big” things, the results are game changers felt across the organization.
Exploit What We’ve Got or Create The Next Big Thing. Last quarter we helped set a few strategic plans for very different organizations, and this group dynamic kept re-occurring where a portion of the room would want to keep going with initiatives in various levels of development and/or execution and the other side would want to move into creating the next big thing. Time and again, it would come to light that organizations would be challenged in trying to do both at the same time for the simple fact that each type of goal requires a distinctly different set of skills and resources. So when setting your goals, we recommend that the stakeholders have a very honest conversation regarding whether or not the company has completely leveraged/adopted what was recently implemented to its fullest and if it has reached that level of maturity, then consider moving into the space of innovation and “big bang” goal setting.
Where’s the Customer. When we start working with organizations it’s pretty common to review their work to date and what we sometimes find is the balance between internal and external goals leans more towards an inward focus, specifically those goals that either attract new customers or increase dependency on the products/services offered are missing from the equation. Given there are only two paths to continued profitability: save money or make more, it has been proven time and again that increasing new revenue, complimented by a mindful eye on continually gaining internal efficiencies, is the best recipe for success well into the future.
Are you interested in more information about goal setting? uDrive subscribers have access to tools and templates that can help. These can be found in the Resources for the Parking Manager and HR Tools sections of the site.