the ceo magazine

The beginning of the year is an excellent time to assess your goals and to ensure you are on the right path to achieving them. If you continually seem to not be able to meet a particular goal, something needs to change. However, it might not be what you think.

Recently I was having lunch with a successful friend who shared her 2014 mega goal that has been on her list for ten years. I couldn’t help myself. I put my “coach hat” on and asked her, “What skills do you already have that will help you achieve your goal?”  She reluctantly named a few technical skills.  She is smart. She has 80 percent of the project done.  She knows what the next step is.  She can see the final product being completed. 

Then I asked, “What skills do you need to develop to achieve your goal?”  She attempted to skirt the issue and change the subject.  She obviously was uncomfortable with this question.  Being a long-time friend, I asked her again, “What skills do you need to develop to achieve your goal?”  Frustrated, she remarked, “You really want me to answer that question, don’t you?”  She did not want to engage in answering the question so I let her off the hook.

It is not easy to come to grips with our fear and anxiety around doing something we have never done before.

I believe that the missing link in goal achievement is that people do not identify the skills they need to develop to achieve their goals. 

They just jump into action and start “doing” and then fizzle out in frustration.

Guess what I am going to ask you? What skills do you already possess that will help you achieve your goals?  Go deep and wide.  Write them down. 

Now, please take a deep breath and identify the skills you need to develop to achieve your goals this year.  Be as specific as you can allow yourself to be.  Do you need to develop the skill of structuring your day?  Marketing? Negotiating? Project management?  Keep writing.  Now pick the one that is most important and decide what is the first step to start building this skill?  Is it reaching out to someone who already possesses that skill and asking them to lunch?  Is it doing a quick internet search to see what comes up?  Maybe it’s a simple online course in project management that will start your skill building. 

Now it’s time to get moving strategically with structure and then execute. This crucial and often missed step in goal planning and execution can help any professional achieve their goals.




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