Sometimes enthusiasm can get the better of us. Before stopping to think, even for a moment, we’re off doing things which make us feel like we’re making great progress. Until we realise we still have the same problems that we thought we’d already solved!
Starting a business can be like that. Full of passion and enthusiasm, combined with the pressure to get your idea out there before somebody else thinks of it, can lead to a lot of action but with little thought to the bigger picture. The result of this can mean that you use your time ineffectively and without focus, leading to a lot of wasted effort and frustration.
What if we could harness all that positive energy and use it in a constructive manner? The good news is that we can, using a simple technique. This is something I use with my clients to get them working more effectively:
- Set your goal
Develop a SMART objective for yourself. Don’t cheat on this part, stick to the SMART criteria! Write this at the bottom of your page and then go through the following steps:
- Consider your current reality
Be honest with yourself, where are you now in relation to your goal. List your strengths as well as your weaknesses. Write a brief summary of this at the top of the page.
Now you need to think about the things that you need to achieve to move from your current reality to accomplishing your goal. Don’t think too much about how or when at this stage, just let the ideas flow.
- Order your milestones
Put your milestones in the most logical order and following this, put deadlines against each milestone. You now have the key points of an action plan but remember this is flexible so it might change as you move towards your goal.
- Take action
Look at step one and decide how you will achieve this. The great news is that you can use the above technique to help you tackle each milestone too! One important thing to remember when using the above technique is not to over plan (see my last blog post) particularly when considering milestones that are further away from your current reality. But taking time-out to develop an action plan can really help focus the mind and get you to use your positive energy in a really productive manner.
Entrepreneurial Development Officer