Four Steps to Achieving Your Goals

Design a plan and hold yourself accountable.

September 17, 2015

If you don’t intend to design a plan to achieve your goals, don’t bother setting any. So says communication and workplace performance expert Stacey Hanke.

She provides four steps to make your goals a reality:

1. Revisit accountability. What you don’t measure, you won’t achieve.

You’ll have days you want to pretend your goals don’t exist. Do what it takes to snap out of that mindset, and enlist an “accountability partner”—a friend, family member, or colleague you trust who won’t let you quit, no matter what.

2. You need to want it. Many people find themselves swimming with the current, moving from one daily task or appointment to another, without pausing to regain their coordinates.

Your goals will float past you if you don’t want them bad enough.

When you crave the satisfaction of reaching your goal more than dreading the work required to achieve it, you’re on the right track.

3. Ask for feedback. Don’t simply guess how you’re doing. Ask others for feedback.

After a meeting, presentation, or face-to-face or phone conversation, ask a trusted colleague these questions:

  • How did I come across?
  • What can I improve in my delivery?
  • What can I improve in my message?
  • How valuable was my message?

Never accept fake, flawed, and vague feedback such as “nice job.” The more specific questions you ask, the more valuable the response.

4. Don’t give in. Defeat doubt by accepting that running into hurdles along your goal-accomplishing journey is just part of the process—challenges that make you stronger and more determined.

Seek motivation from your accountability partner during these times.

Stay focused on the outcome rather than wasting your energy contemplating how easy it would be to give up.

STACEY HANKE is an educator, author, and communications expert who heads Stacey Hanke Inc.

This article first appeared in Credit Union Front Line Newsletter, the monthly sales and service newsletter for branch staff and their managers. Subscribe now to the print edition or PDF version.