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    A Road Map for the New Year

    Many of us, this time of year, reflect upon our successes and challenges of the past year. Though it’s been said, “you can’t change the past,” we can learn from it and use what we learned as a road map for the coming year. It’s a great time to clear out the cobwebs, start fresh, and ensure your road map is leading you toward your destination…success! Some things to consider as you design your road map are: Set Goals, Perform Actions, and Change Behaviors!

    Set Goals

    • Professional and personal

    • Where you are now and where you want to be at the end of 2018

    Perform Actions

    • What you do, or what you don’t do, to reach success 

    • Heading in the right direction and adjusting the route if you get off course

    Change Behaviors

    • Behaviors are “how” you complete the actions

    • Behaviors can only be determined and accomplished by you

    Let’s break each one of these down. When you set your goals, consider this:

    1. Make them realistic and attainable

    2. Break goals down into bite size pieces

    If goals are not attainable and broken down into bite size pieces, it would be similar to starting a diet with the goal of losing 50 pounds in 14 days—it’s not realistic (not to mention, it’s not healthy). We may think it’s a way to lose weight quickly; however, you haven’t learned good eating habits through the process. This means that you will most likely get some temporary results; however, fall back into old habits. Be realistic; if you can’t attain a positive outcome, you most likely won’t continue with the actions that got you there. This is why many of us look at dieting as something we “need” to do, not what we “want” to do. We sabotage success before we even begin and set ourselves up for failure. If you make it more realistic and attainable, you’re more likely to be successful. Instead of telling yourself that you need to lose 50 pounds fast, why not tell yourself that you want to lose 50 pounds so you will be able to enjoy time with your children and grandchildren. Think of this as your personal "Mission Statement.”

    You accomplish this by performing actions. Create an “actionable list” by considering:

    1. What are the things I’m going to do to accomplish this

    2. Set a pre-determined time for it to be completed

    3. Adjust and course correct when necessary

    An action is something you “do” to get to an end result. Let’s say your goal is to have more time for family. You need to perform actions that will lead you in the direction of improving your time management in order to accomplish this goal. Some of these actions might be to set daily priorities, plan for the unexpected, delegate, etc. The behaviors we execute to accomplish the goal are as important as the actions.

    Behaviors are the things we need to complete to get the results we’re striving for. Consider the following:

    1. What do I need to do more

    2. What do I need to do different

    3. What do I need to do less

    If you're in sales and want to improve your closing ratio, you might want to talk to more prospects, ask more questions, take time addressing concerns and questions, reduce your time spent talking, and spend more time listening, etc.

    Continue developing your list and commit time to changing behaviors. This is the crux of getting results and attaining success!

    It’s a beginning, your beginning, and now is the time for you to develop a road map for a productive new year. Setting goals, performing actions, and changing behavior will help you reap the success you are looking for in the coming year!

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    Victoria Penn

    Victoria Penn is the AVP of Marketing for SWBC. She manages a team of marketers that develop traditional and digital marketing strategies. She also leads the Content Marketing Strategy for SWBC.

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