Job Advice

Goal Setting through the eyes of a 1st grader

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October 28, 2009
Currently, our company is in the midst of our Strategic Planning process for 2010.  I am really impressed with our leadership and their enthusiasm and inclusion of the full staff to develop the most comprehensive and effective plan possible.  Planning and goal setting is never an easy task, particularly when you are coming out of a very difficult and challenging year as we all know 2009 has been.

To help put this process into perspective, it is always helpful to see the world through the eyes of a 6 year old.  My son, Nate, recently went through some goal setting of his own.  It is red ribbon week at school and they are learning about setting goals to improve themselves.  Here is what Nate came up with.  (Forgive the grammar and spelling, I am writing down exactly what he wrote)

NateNate’s goal is to…

"Explore my dads farm. It has 140 acers of land."

Three steps I need to take to achieve this goal are:

1)  "I need to put long pants on so I do not get poked by the prickels"
2)  "I need transportation to get arownd the place"

3)  "I need to finde the time to do that"
Children can make the difficult seem so basic and easy.  Let’s apply Nate’s goal setting process to any business:

Our goal is to…
Explore the terrain in 2010. 

Three steps we need to take to achieve this goal are:
1) Know what obstacles are out there so you can prepare for them. 
2) Have a vehicle to get you there (figuratively or literally)
3) Plan the time to get it done

Combine this with what children do naturally, (working within their strengths), and you have a no fail plan for success in the coming year.  No one explains this concept better than Marcus Buckingham:

Marcus Buckingham"Back when you were young, your strengths were to be trusted. You might not have had a name for them … but when you were a child, you listened to them.  Then, somehow between then and now, your childhood clarity faded and you started listening to the world more closely than you did yourself."

My advice in this crazy economic topsy turvy job market with wavering hiring trends and uncertainty in all industries, (not just Indianapolis staffing) is this:  Go with your inner child, identify and respect where your strengths lie and remember to wear long pants so you don’t get "poked by the prickels".