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Organization Tuesday: Organizing Your Goals For a New YearViews: 332
Jan 06, 2009 8:47 pmOrganization Tuesday: Organizing Your Goals For a New Year#

Julie Bestry
Happy Get Organized Month!  Couldn't we all use some smarter goal-setting techniques so we can succeed at our goal-getting?

At the start of a new year, we set often resolutions for our personal lives and goals for our businesses, but it's striking how many things appear on our lists repeatedly from year to year.  According to MyGoals.com, some of the most popular resolutions are losing weight, quitting smoking, reducing debt, getting organized and finding a better job.  In business, we set goals for increasing revenue, improving efficiency, extending product lines, etc.

Over the years, we’ve been told to set SMART goals, where the acronym stands for

•    Specific--not mere "more" or "better", as specificity allows for greater visualization
•    Measurable--how much revenue, how many pounds
•    Attainable--goals set out of reach eventually lead to disappointment
•    Realistic--have your friends, family, employees and clients give you a reality check
•    Time Sensitive—accomplish the goal, or the benchmarks, by when?

Perhaps it’s time to take the next step.  First, I'd like to suggest we make it SMARTY, with the Y standing for Yours.  It does us no good if our resolutions or goals are selected because they reflect our loved ones' desires or the latest marketing buzzwords. Set goals which reflect your own aspirations!

What other goal characteristics that might help us reach success?  How about another S--for Stretch?  Let's face it, when we stick to the “same-old, same-old”, we may meet expectations (our own, as well as our clients), but don't we want to exceed expectations?  In Annie Hall, Woody Allen said “Relationships are like sharks.  They have to keep moving forward or they'll die."  Let's make sure we keep our business relationship sharks alive and well—keep stretching!

Next, I submit a K for Knowledge-based.  We need to commit ourselves to goals based on information, research and strong reasoning.  It's great to follow our gut instincts, but professionalism means we need research to back us up.  Specificity means we've moved beyond the vague--we've pinpointed what previous businesses have accomplished successfully.  To make our goals measurable, we must base our projections on recorded successes and failures—our own and others in our industry.  To know if a goal is attainable, surely knowledge of the business environment is key. 

Let’s add an I for Imaginative.  Instead of saying we will lose 12 pounds in six weeks--couldn't we just as easily, and more entertainingly, say we'll fit into our favorite outfit by Valentine's Day?  It’s the same in business--a little imagination inspires the soul.  Instead of just saying that we'll increase revenue by $3000 in April, why not state what business rewards (like attendance at a conference) might be in the works?

How about another R?  Just because we've said our goals should be realistic doesn't mean they can't be Revolutionary!  We need not foment rebellion, but if something doesn't work, we needn’t choose between miserable resignation or totally abandonment.  If something in your personal lives, relationships, businesses or member organizations falls short of where you think they should be, set a revolutionary goal and make a change.  Fire off the “Email Read 'Round the World” and maybe a statue will be erected in your honor!

Finally, let's add a T for Tantalizing.  Boring-sounding goals don’t inspire action or commitment.  If you can't inspire yourself, how will you motivate your troops (your kids or your staff) so they can support you?  Shouldn’t your goals make you salivate as if someone just walked by your table with a chocolate cheesecake?  State your goals such that you’re eager to advance towards them.

So let’s make some goals and be SMARTY SKIRTs in 2009!  (With apologies to the guys, but “smarty pants” is SO last century.)  ;-)

Julie Bestry, Certified Professional Organizer®
Best Results Organizing
"Don't apologize.  Organize!"
Visit http://www.juliebestry.com to save time and money, reduce stress and increase your productivity

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