darren-julyCan you believe it’s July?! Mid-year – it comes so fast…every year. If you’ve been following my plan to crush your 2022 goals, you know it’s time for another check-in.

Here’s the thing, though. This year’s progress may not look like last year’s progress. Or even the year before. I don’t have to tell you those were outlier years, but that’s no excuse for falling short. 

If you need a plan to stay on track, you’re in luck. Here are four steps to staying laser focused on your goals.

  1. Get Specific

Ask yourself what success at these goals looks like to you. You want to assess each goal using the SMART plan.

This means each goal needs to be:

  • – Specific 
  • – Measurable
  • – Actionable
  • – Relevant
  • – Time sensitive

Make sure your goal inspires you, challenges you and provides that carrot of fulfillment you need to get across the finish line. 

  1. Commit 

Goals are the “what,” the commitment is the “how.” This is where discipline comes in. You need to create habits and time in your schedule for actionable items that are impactful and non-negotiable. These aren’t items to be crossed off a list. They’re commitments of time, energy and sometimes money to get you further down the line. 

Maybe this involves creating more video content, writing a monthly newsletter, reconnecting with three former clients a week, expanding your referral network by two connections a month. Whatever the item, make sure there is a direct link between these time/energy/money commitments and your end goal. As with the larger goal, use the SMART plan to gauge the effectiveness of these actions.

  1. Plan

Wait, didn’t we just plan in Step 2? I’m glad you’re paying attention, but there’s a difference between the commitments you create and the plan with high-priority projects and specific deadlines. These plans are what put the commitments to good use. 

So let’s say you want to meet with three potential borrowers a week. That’s a solid commitment that would bring you closer to your goal of increasing your client roster, the number of loans you close and/or the total volume of transactions. You decide on that one – it’s your goal, after all. This plan would involve identifying these clients, making contact, getting them to say yes to the meetings, then scheduling the meetings. It may also involve writing down talking points and a list of questions. These are time-sensitive items, with each prospect representing its own project.

  1. Rally

You want to rally all your efforts around one specific theme, which will reveal itself once you have your goals, disciplines and plans down. This theme is a rally cry of sorts that will remind you of each item’s purpose, as well as the role it plays in your success.

Your theme should be short. Something like “expanded network,” “more communication,” “thought leadership” or “increased referrals.” 

Six months down, six to go. Make sure these last six count by creating a meaningful plan that leads to tangible progress. 

Regional Vice President - Southwest

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.