Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Five Year Plans (part 2 of 3)

Yesterday I started a series of posts about five year plans --  the practice of writing down a script or plot line of your intended future for the next five years.  You can see the previous post HERE.  Today I want to look at a second benefit of this exercise.

Today's Thought: Five year plans allow you to set goals that pull you toward a preferred future.   

Ineffective people/organizations hope they will know success when they get there.  The problem is that success is a moving target and the only way to succeed is to continue moving toward goals that are posted ahead of you.  Stephen Covey made popular the idea of beginning with the end in mind.  Five year plans force a leader to evaluate what he wants the future to look like, thereby enabling him to set goals and benchmarks to move toward that future.  If you have done any type of improvement plan you know that it is based on incremental, manageable, and achievable goals.  When those goals are reached there needs to be new goals setup beyond so that you are drawn toward continued success.  While there is much to say on success, its definition for instance, suffice to say that it is not a static destination, but rather a fluid journey of  moving toward a preferred future.  Planning five years in advance gives you the opportunity to choose the future you want to move toward.  That way you'll know you are succeeding when you're moving past your goals.  You may find that when planning five years ahead that you don't reach all the goals you set, but the process of planning and working toward them can still move you forward toward your preferred future.



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