by George Hedley
Could you imagine a professional football coach starting the season without a target or goal to win more games than they did last year? Of course not! A great coach always takes a look at their strengths and weaknesses after the season's end to determine what it will take to do better next year. As a business owner, manager or contractor, this process of assessment and improvement is a necessary factor in building a great business and achieving the goals you want. A year end review and goal setting session will get your company started off towards new targets with a renewed spirit of excitement.
If you're like most people, you don't make new years resolutions. You figure, why waste your time committing to something you'll never do. But, I bet you really want to change something in your business or personal life for the better. Maybe you want to get more organized, spend more time with your loved ones, get started living more healthy, take more time off from work, delegate more tasks to your employees, find someone to help you at the office, get rid of a bad customer or troublesome employee, seek new business opportunities, or start looking for ways to build some wealth. Whatever you want, you'll never get it without taking the first step.
The majority of people tend to postpone going for what they want their entire life. They let circumstances keep them stuck in the same place. Ask yourself:
What do I want?
What do I want to change?
What do I want to do different?
What can I do now to make a difference?
People who write down their goals and desires achieve them. Those who don't take the time to write down and identify what they want, never make their dreams a priority and go through life searching for success. What you see yourself achieving is what you will achieve. Every time I have a target or goal written down, I stay focused on doing what it takes to make it become a reality.
The uncomfortable zone
Remember the old line: 'Stay alive until 1995!' Well, 1995 came and went over ten years ago and nothing changed. What did you fix in 2006? What will you do to make 2007 just like heaven? Or perhaps you'll wait until 2008 to try and make it great. Because in 2009, it should be fine! People who don't have written goals, continue doing things the same way and get trapped in what I call the "un-comfortable" zone. They know they want to break out of their situation by doing something different, but don't. They live with continuous dull pain, stress, and discomfort rather than do something new, exciting, or different. People get used to their situation and stop trying to better themselves. They make excuses like: 'I don't have time right now to make changes,' 'I'll start in a few months,' 'I'll wait until after the elections,' 'I'd better not do anything different now until the economy gets better,' or 'I don't have enough resources to try new things.' You can find the time if you really want to achieve your goals. What do you want, dull pain or positive results? What do you want, dull pain or positive results?
As another new year approaches, look at your business goals for the next 12 months. Think about your future and imagine what you want to be different or better one year from now. Consider these following areas you may want to improve:
__ Customers __ Personnel
__ Management team __ Training
__ Quality workmanship __ Service
__ Scheduling __ Sales
__ Marketing __ Estimating
__ Engineering __ Technology
__ Subcontractors __ Suppliers
__ Job Profit __ Productivity
__ Company profit __ Company equity
__ Reduce debt __ Financial systems
__ Operational systems __ Field systems
__ Project management __ Equipment
__ Banking __ Bonding
__ Insurance __ Your paycheck
__ Investments __ Time off
__ Fun __ Other
As you consider each area above, think about what is working well and what might need improvement. For example:
- Do you have a customer you want to fire?
- Where are you wasting money?
- How can you be more efficient?
- What improvement areas are needed with your staff?
- Do you have a void in your management team?
- Do you need to develop a better banking relationship?
- Is there a faster way to complete your projects?
- What can you delegate and let go of?
- How many hours do you want to work?
- How much money do you want to make?
- Do you want to seek investment opportunities?
- What should you stop doing?
- What should you start doing differently?
Next, rate each area you identified on a priority scale. Rank the top priorities an "A", the next level priorities a "B" and the least priority items a "C". Now rank each category from the most important priority to the least important in descending order. Your ultimate challenge is to identify four areas you want to focus your energy on over the next year to build a great construction business. I personally can only work on three or four things at once. Any more targets or goals are what I call "goal overload!"
Write it now!
Now for the fun part. Write down your new years resolutions for the next year. First, write down the one HUGE thing you want to accomplish this coming year. Next, write down 3 goals you want to achieve in the next 12 months and how to achieve them. Be sure to be specific and make your targets measurable. For example: a target to add more customers is not a goal. A goal to add 5 new customers averaging $100,000 per year each in construction contracts is a clear target to aim at. Next give each goal a deadline. For example: we will add one new customer every 2 months for the next 10 months starting January.
My Huge Target: _____________________________________
Goal #1: _____________________________________
Goal #2: _____________________________________
Goal #3: _____________________________________
Keep your goals in front of you so you can refer to them often. Post them on your office wall for all to see. Also put them in your day-timer and another copy in your wallet where you can look at them everyday. When you see targets in writing, you stay focused and constantly think of action plans and steps to achieve what you want. When you don't have written targets, you tend to go with the flow and let non-important activities become your priority and fill your day. By using the year end as a trigger to sit down and write out your goals and identify new years resolutions, your future will become what you want it to be. Don't wait another year to identify what you want. The clock is ticking!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
George Hedley is the best-selling author of "Get Your Business to Work!" As a professional speaker and business coach, he helps entrepreneurs and business owners build profitable companies. E-mail: email@example.com to request your free copy of "Everything Contractors Know About Making A Profit!" or signup for his e-newsletter. To hire George to speak , attend his 'Profit-Builder Circle' academy or find out how he can help your company grow, call 800-851-8553 or visit www.hardhatpresentations.com
3300 Irvine Avenue #135
Newport Beach, CA 92660
Phone (949) 852-2005
Fax (949) 852-3002
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org website: www.hardhatpresentations.com
George Hedley owns a $75 million construction and development company and
Hardhat Presentations. He speaks to companies on building profitable businesses,
leadership, and loyal customers. He holds 3-day in-depth "Profit-Builder
Circles" open to construction company owners in an interactive roundtable
format every 3 months. His "Profit-Builder System" includes proven
tools to always make a profit, build equity, create wealth, win profitable
jobs, motivate your people, and enjoy the benefits of owning a profitable company.