Monday, December 28, 2009

Action Plans: Five Steps to Success

Setting goals is a great activity for not only business but in all areas of life. Many people set very realistic, measureable and achievable goals but fail to achieve the goals they set. Some of the difficulty arises from not having a plan to achieve the goals set. Use these five simple steps to create an action plan to help ensure a positive outcome in reaching goals.
1. Remember the benefits. Frank Leahy taught us, “When the going gets tough, the tough get going.” This particularly pertains to goals because we tend to forget that reaching a desired outcome may be hard work. If that is the case then remind yourself when it is tough what are the benefits from achieving your goal? Visualize the outcome; mentally see yourself when you have succeeded. Remember why you desire the goal you chose.
2. Plan for obstacles. Not surprisingly, if you set goals that really cause you to work hard, there may be obstacles to overcome along the way. Plan for the obstacles and possible solutions so you will be prepared when these problems arise.
3. Consider also what new knowledge or skills needed to reach your goals. Are there people or groups that can help you in your pursuit?
4. Make action steps. Planning the steps necessary to achieve your goals will help your clearly see what is necessary to reach your goals.
5. Completion Date. When will you complete your goal? Setting a date is necessary. It creates urgency and a target.
Setting goals and working towards those goals can help in many different facets of life. Whether just helping organization or pushing to strive further than ever possible, goals may be more attainable when a plan is created. Planning allows a systematic approach to achievement. It enables us to work towards success.

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