If you are like me, and millions of viewers, you have been watching the Rio Olympics. As we all hope for and wish to witness, there has been some exceptional performances at the highest level of competition. Some that come to mind are Michael Phelps in the 200 Individual Medley in which he won gold for his fourth consecutive Olympic Games. Another is Usain Bolt’s third straight gold medal in the 100m. Another amazing gold medal performance was Simone Biles in the vault competition in woman gymnastics.
Being a performance psychologist, I do more than just watch however. I listen attentively to what the athletes say about their preparation and mind-set which got them to the pinnacle of their field. One such moment which caught my attention was what was said by Justin Rose, the Gold Medalist in Golf at the Rio Olympics. Rose is one of the best golfers in the world and a former U.S. Open winner. Rose indicated that his main goal this year was not to win majors, but to win gold at the Olympic Games.
Psychologists have studied goal-setting for many years and tout their importance to performance. Specifically, goals get you focused on your task, keep you inspired under difficult times, and foster strategies to attain those goals. Justin Rose used these goal-setting imperatives to his advantage and came home a world champion.
While most business people now the importance of goals, many do not create an effective goal setting program which will enable them to attain a higher level of performance. The following is a simple 5-step goal setting process for you to employ into your daily routine:
Step 1: Create a long term goal
The long term goal is the theme of your program. For instance, let’s say your long-term goal for the next 3 months is get more clients. This goal will now guide your focus and energy toward attaining this important goal.
Step 2: Discover your baseline.
How many new clients do you usually attain every month? It is important to get a baseline as it will help you set realistic goals as well as help you to evaluate your strategies.
Step 3: Set realistic and specific goals.
A goal should be realistic yet challenging. Thus, if you usually get 2 new clients every month, it is unrealistic and very stressful to believe you should now get 10 new clients every month for the next 3 months. Instead, a realistic goal would be to increase that number to 3 or 4 new clients for the next month.
Step 4: Create strategies to attain your goals
You should have a few strategies to attain your goal of getting new clients. One strategy could be to attend at least one new community meeting every month. Another strategy could be that you give one presentation about your expertise each month to a local community group.
Step 5: Assess your improvement.
If you see improvement, then stick with your plan. If not, then you will need to change your strategies. If you are not attaining your goal of getting more clients then perhaps you need to increase the amount of new meetings you attend, as well as the amount of presentations you are giving each month.
To be world class in your profession, just don’t set goals. Achieve them with an effective goal-setting program.
Bio: Dr. Gregg Steinberg is a professor of human performance at APSU. He is the author of the Washington Post bestselling business book, “Full Throttle.” Steinberg speaks about emotional toughness to Fortune 500 companies. For the month of August, Dr. Gregg is running an 1/2 price sale on all his coaching and products. If you have interest, please e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org