Imagine you’re going on a hike in the woods. Would you bring a map or would you wait until you were in the woods before wishing you had thought to do so? Business isn’t much different. If you want to bridge the gap between your current state and your desire future, you’re going to need a map—a plan of action for getting there. Oftentimes organizations create bold visions for the future but then never follow through with a plan of action. Without a plan, they are doomed to wander aimlessly.
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Staying on Track
The best way to create a plan of action that will keep you on track is to chunk things down into smaller increments. I like to break the plan into 90-day increments, because studies have shown that using 90-day increments is an effective tool that leads to success. At the end of 90 days people tend to get off track and lose direction. Using 90-day increments provides an opportunity to bring people back and refocus their attention on what they’re going to do in the next 90 days to help move the organization closer to that one-year vision.
I advise preparing written directions for the 90-day increments. This can be done by department: for the next 90 days this is what we will do to make progress toward the one-year vision. Then read it every day as reinforcement. This provides a valuable lens for questioning whether your actions are moving you closer to or further away from your 90-day goals, providing a framework for decision-making.
No one gets from New York to California without a map (or a GPS!). A plan of action is vital for reaching your destination. For 40 years Gary has been helping businesses get where they want to go, and he can do it for you too. Give Gary a call at 503-312-3145 for more information.