The Goal Formula

Goals are an important facet of making progress in life.  I’ve talked with a lot of times and I find that sometimes people talk about their goals, but they are not really talking about their goals.  They are talking about wishes.  When I hear someone make a wish it sounds something like this.  I want to grow my business.  I want to make more money.  I want to take more time off.  I want to improve the relationship with my son or daughter.  I want to have a better marriage.  The problem with these “goals” is they are not goals.

Let’s deconstruct one of these wishes and see where the problems are.  I want to grow my business.  Here are the problems I see with this wish:

  1. There is no measurable criteria in this wish.  How is one to know when the the business is grown?  Am I looking to grow sales?  Am I looking to grow profit?  Am I looking to increase my market share?  What exactly is my objective?
  2. There is no deadline in this wish.  It does not give one a timetable to work on.  Without a deadline, once could wait 30 years to reach the wish.
  3. There is no starting point with this wish.  Where are we currently.   Without a starting point I don’t have a basis for measuring progress.
  4. There is not end point.  When do I know that I have accomplished my goal?

There is an acronym for what makes a good goal.  It should be a S.M.A.R.T goal

  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Achievable
  • Results Focused
  • Time Bound

I think this is a good starting place for developing goals. There is a  way to simplify the goal.  When I set goals I use the following Goal Formula

Starting Point to Ending Point by Deadline.

By putting a goal in this formula you define where I am starting.  Next one is defining where I want to arrive.  Without the ending point I do not know when the goal is achieved.  Finally, there is a deadline set.  I have a time frame for when I want to accomplish my goal.

Let’s rephrase my wish of I want to make more money.

Increase my monthly business income from $20,000/month to $30,000 by June 30, 2018.

  1. Starting Point – monthly business income = $20,000
  2. Ending Point – monthly business income = $30,000
  3. Deadline – June 30, 2018

There is complete clarity in this goal.  I know exactly what I’m working on and when I want to accomplish the goal.  All I need to do now is do the work to complete the goal.

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