Without a Goal, You’ll Never Score One | Setting Goals

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I once heard a math teacher announce an unusual dream at a school assembly: “I hope you all fail.” he said to an audience of high school seniors eager to go out and conquer the world. “Because if you don’t, you haven’t set your goals high enough.”

Robert Shuller

Getting by without setting goals is the ultimate way to shortchange your life. It’s not a way to failure. It’s the definition of nonstarting.

Evangelist Robert H. Schuller describes four kinds of people:

  • First come the cop outs. These people set no goals and make no decisions.
  • Second are the hold-outs.  They have a beautiful dream, but unce
    rtainly makes them afraid to respond to its challenge.
  • The dropouts are third.  They start to make their dream come true, but when the going gets tough, they quit.
  • Finally, there are the all-outs. These brave souls know where they’re headed and do what it takes to get there.

It all starts with goals: Winners make goals. Losers make excuses.

 

 

 

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It’s More Fun When It’s Spontaneous

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Lesson 45:

It’s More Fun When It’s Spontaneous

No, I’m not talking about sex again, though the same principle applies. Have you ever noticed a certain lack of enthusiasm for what passes for fun of the usual corporate variety?

You don’t have to wait until the calendar tells you it’s time for the Christmas party or the office picnic or some other form of compulsory fun.

When you sense that the pressure has really risen and stayed on too long, when you can feel the concentration level going down—that’s the time to have the party or to come up with tickets to the ball game or the concert. You’ll be pleasantly surprised at the results the next morning after that freebie from the boss. You noticed what was happening: You cared—and you did something about it.

 

*Excerpted from “Swim with the Sharks Without Being Eaten Alive”

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Believe in Yourself, Even When No One Else Does

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Lesson 15

Believe in Yourself, Even When No One Else Does

Remember the four-minute mile? People had been trying to achieve it since the days of the ancient Greeks. In fact, folklore has it that the Greeks had lions chase the runners, thinking that would make them run faster. They also tried tiger’s milk—not the stuff you get down at the health-food store, but the real thing. Nothing worked. So they decided it was impossible. And for thousands of years everyone believed it. It was physiologically impossible for a human being to run a mile in four minutes. Our bone structure was all wrong. Wind resistance too great. Inadequate lung power. There were a million reasons.

Then one man, one single human being, proved that the doctors, the trainers, the athletes, and the millions and millions before him who tried and failed, were all wrong. And miracle of miracles, the year after Roger Bannister broke the four-minute mile, thirty-seven other runners broke the four-minute mile, and the year after that three hundred runners broke the four-minute mile

A few years ago, in New York, I stood at the finish line of the Fifth Avenue Mile and watched thirteen out of thirteen runners break the four-minute mile in a single race. In other words, the runner who finished dead last would have been regarded as having accomplished the impossible a few decades ago.

What happened? There were no great breakthroughs in training. Human bone structure didn’t suddenly improve. But human attitudes did.

Think about the stonecutter: He hammers at his rock a hundred times without denting it. On the hundred-and-first blow, the rock will split in two. You know it is not that blow that did it but all that had gone before. You can accomplish your goals… if you set them. Who says you’re not tougher, smarter, better, harder-working, more able than your competition? It doesn’t matter if they say you can’t do it. What matters, the only thing that matters, is if you say it. Until Bannister came along, we all believed in the experts. Bannister believed in himself… and changed the world. If you believe in yourself, well, then, there’s nothing you can’t accomplish. So don’t quit. Don’t ever quit.

 

* Excerpted from Swim With The Sharks Without Being Eaten Alive

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If You Don’t Have A Destination, You’ll Never Get There

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Setting goals is simply the long-term version of keeping track of your time. Actually, a three-step process is involved:

  • Setting goals
  • Developing a plan to achieve those goals
  • Keeping track of your time to make sure your plan gets executed
When I was in Japan in 1983, we had a series of seminars in which we heard speeches from the leaders of Japan’s largest industrial concerns. We heard from the top officers of Honda, Sony, Mitsubishi, and the head of the biggest enterprise of all, the eighty-eight-year-old president of Matsushita Electric.
Persuading them to speak to us was quite a coup, because the Japanese system is much more rigidly structured than ours, and they regard appearing before the troops in this fashion as somewhat beneath their dignity.
And if giving speeches was regarded as a crude Occidental custom, imagine how they felt about answering questions.
But when out eighty-eight-year-old headliner addressed us, he spoke eloquently and profoundly. Then came the questions:
Questions: “Mr. President, does your company have long-range goals?”
Answer: “Yes.”
Question: “How long are your long-range goals?”
Answer: “Two hundred fifty years.”
Question: “What do you need to carry them out?”
Answer: “Patience.”
Sounds like a joke. But if it’s so funny, how come every time we compete with them, they bury us? Everybody and every business need a set of basic goals and beliefs, but most of us are seat-of-the-pants, one-day-at-a-time operators. Our goals are fuzzy and our plans for achieving them nonexistent.
One of my good friends gave me her definition of a goal, and it’s the best one I’ve ever heard. “A goal is a dream with a deadline.” Write yours down–because that’s the only way you’ll give them the substance they need to force you to carry them out.
For more life lessons on success, business and leadership connect with me on Facebook. 
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The Confidence Game

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For about six weeks every year, beginning in late December and continuing through early February, football fans get the ultimate fix: the college bowl games, The NFL play-offs and, finally, the Super Bowl. It’s also an annual refresher course in winning and losing that separates the champs from the also-rans.

For a moment, consider the losers in these annual contests. The also-rans work mighty hard to get to those games in the first place. What causes these exceptional teams to be eliminated? Much of the reason can be traced to split-second breakdowns in what you might call the confidence game.

Legendary Alabama football coach Paul Bryant retired with 323 wins over 38 seasons. “Bear” Bryant used to say that members of a winning team needed five things:

1. Tell me what you expect from me.

2. Give me an opportunity to perform.

3. Let me know how I’m doing.

4. Give me guidance when I need it.

5. Reward me according to my contributions.

 

Winners need straight information. Too often, you’ll hear salespeople complain they’re not getting a constant flow of confident support. Confidence is surely important. So is exact and clear direction at critical moments. When everything is on the line, make sure you’re listening for the right signals.

Connect with me on Facebook and Twitter for more tips on business, sales, leadership, networking, negotiating and life.

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Strive For Excellence

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A friend sent me an amusing story about working for the “Average Company,” which she’d read in Simple Tools and thought it was worth passing on. Now I’m doing you the same favor, because if you are getting bored with striving for excellence or settling for just doing a pretty good job, you may want to apply for a job here.

At the Average Company, the corporate vision is:

“To be no worse than any other company.”

The value statement:

“The greatest labor-saving device of all is tomorrow.”

It gets better. The corporate motto:

“You don’t have to be really good to get by.”

And the sales goal:

“To match last year’s sales goals, if it works out.”

My favorite is the management philosophy:

“To not make a decision is to make a decision.”

The law of averages tells us that, eventually, everything evens out. You have a few good years, you’ll probably have a bad year here and there. Most companies, if well managed, can weather the storm and come back strong and healthy. Those that don’t survive probably just got a little lucky in the good years.

If you work for the Average Company, you know that sometimes things work out better than others. You try, but occasionally circumstances are out of your control… or are they? I’m of the opinion that you make your own luck.

“The harder I work the luckier I get.”–Dave Thomas, founder of Wendy’s

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Without A Goal, You'll Never Score One

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I once heard a math teacher announce an unusual dream at a school assembly: “I hope you all fail,” he said to an audience of high school seniors eager to go out and conquer the world. “Because if you don’t, you haven’t set your goals high enough.”

Betting by without setting goals is the ultimate way to shortchange your life. It’s not a way to failure. It’s the definition of nonstarting.

Evangelist Robert H. Schuller describes four kinds of people:

  • First come the cop-outs. These people set no goals and make no decisions.
  • Second are the hold-outs. They have a beautiful dream, but uncertainty makes them afraid to respond to its challenge.
  • The dropouts are third. They start to make their dream come true. but when the going gets tough, they quit.
  • Finally, there are the all-outs. These brave souls know where they’re headed and do what it takes to get there.
It all starts with goals: Winners make goals. Losers make excuses.
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