“Where there is no vision the people perish” – Dreams Visions, & Goal Setting

EntreLeadership Session II

ramseyRight before the conference I wrote a series of posts about goals and goal setting. The second session at the Orlando EntreLeadership conference fell right in line with those posts and gave me several new things to think about. I remember hearing along the way at some point in the past that goals are dreams with deadlines and this couldn’t be more true. Dreams are just that – visions, platitudes, and fantasies – and are seldom realized in real life because there is little to no effort ever expended in seeming them come true. But at their core is a vision that the dreamer wants to see come true. Goals are dreams that have deadlines and can only be realized through hard work and focus.

Dave said that “Vision that is ready to go to work is a goal.” He also pointed out an essential point about dreams and goals when he pointed out that “goals convert vision in to energy.” If you want your “blue-sky thinking” and dreams to come true you need to crystallize them, quantify them and go to work on them. To do this each goal needs to:

  • Be specific
  • Be measurable
  • Be your own goals
  • Have a time limit
  • Be in writing

It was here he pointed out that you need to do the math. For instance if you wanted to earn $100,000 per year what would need to happen? You’d need the following:

  • Earn $8300 per month
  • Earn $2100 per week
  • What activity would need to occur to earn $2100 per week?
  • How many customers would you need to see? How many products would you need to sell?
  • What’s your closing ratio?

To make this happen you simply do the math and perform the action needed to reach the goal. If you don’t break it down like this, then your goal is just a fantasy if you have no plan to back it up.

You need to have goals for each spoke on the “Wheel of Life”:

  • Financial
  • Career
  • Spiritual
  • Physical
  • Family
  • Social

If you’re “wheel” isn’t in balance then you’ll have a ‘flat tire’ and you’re life can be a pretty bumpy ride.

Leading with Goals

The next part of goals was in reference to leading with goals. I’d heard of most of the previous stuff before and it was a great reminder, but this next part had the greatest impact on me.

Your team has to share your vision and own your goals if you want to be successful. I think this is where Dave really leads by example, because his team is very well-put-together, unified and they share common goals when it comes to the business. He does this by “casting his vision” for what he wants the business to be and his team shares and pursues his vision with him leading from the front.

“Goals on a team are shared when the team develops the goals together.” The shared goals of an organization create communication because by sharing the vision each part knows what role they play in the grand scheme of things. The shared vision also produces unity as all the different pieces are working toward a common goal.

Dave points out that “individual team members can’t have goals dictated to them; instead, help the team develop their goals.” I’ve experienced this first-hand myself. It’s hard for your team to really buy in to what you’re doing if you set their goals for them. Leaders cast the vision and clarify objectives then allow their teams to set personal and team goals within the guidelines of the vision. The guidelines need to have smaller goals for elements that everyone agrees are needed to achieve the objective and realize the vision.

One of the thoughts I had while we were going through this section is that all of these principles are as equally as applicable to your family. In fact, if you replace “team” with “family” you’ve got a great formula for building a great life together and a great future for your family. As a father it’s important to me for my family to have a vision for our life, where we want to go, and who we want to be. We’re writing our story much in the same way that Don Miller talks about in “A Million Miles in a Thousand Years”. As the leader of my family it’s my job to write a better story (see chapter 10 of Don’s book) cast a vision and work together toward our objectives with my wife and daughter buying in.

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