Write it down!
I’m not talking about your notes, or appointments or anything else like that; I’m talking about your plan.
Yes your plan, daily, weekly, monthly, annual, bi-annual. You get the picture.
One of the key actions contributing to my success this year hasn’t been the amount of time I’ve invested in my job, it has been the volume of work I’ve completed during that time.
This time last year I was fortunate enough to be introduced to the work of Michael Hyatt. Now I have to be clear, he is not for anyone who can’t abide an over abundance of PMA (positive metal attitude). It is cheesy slimy American “you can fly to the moon if you believe in yourself” kind of stuff, but you know what, it works!
And it does so because you have to write it down. Not only do you write it down though, you share it with others. Your Mentors! You become 100% accountable for the items you commit into writing. Between Christmas and New Year, whilst the Family were enjoying some fun filled days at Centre Parcs, I was sat in a quiet woodland lodge mapping out my best year ever (I told you it was cheesy). One of my mentors for 2016 was my Mum – Mrs E.M. Lambert – MBE and she too was on the short vacation. After delivering the outline of my plan to her in the early evening she agreed to review this with me each month throughout the year.
The plan included both work and private activities and the first half of the year was so full that I unfortunately missed a number of important family events due to other commitments as well as my initial goals on 2 out of the 10 I’d agreed to. Despite writing this all down, meeting with my mentors (all 3 of them) and working more hours than before it wasn’t working.
On paper it should have been perfect, but there was something missing. By mid year I was short on 4 of my 10 deadlines, albeit much further along the timeline on all of them it was slipping further. I needed to do something.
I’ve always been one to try and use tools to keep me on track, but even the CRM reminders and constant Evernote reminders were becoming easier to ignore. So I went back to “Old School”. I wrote it down on my weekly whiteboard planner. My actions for the week, my blocked items for prospecting, for emails, for proposals, for fitness, for lunch. In fact it became very easy to do once I’d got used to it. 1 hour on a Sunday and then confirmed each morning before I started work and suddenly I was working less hours and getting so much more done. By the end of the 3rd quarter I was back on track, just 2 of deadlines were outstanding but they were so much closer to being on track now too. At the time of writing this I have, and will still do so, miss just one of my 10 VERY ambitious goals for 2016. Had I have started the “Old School” art of writing this down on “paper” (AKA Whiteboard) earlier in the year I have no doubt that I would have completed them all, but then again that now tells me that in 2017 I truly will have the best year ever.