Insanely unrealistic and unobtainable goals…

Jack Welsh, former CEO of GE, made a couple of tenants famous:

  • Fire the bottom 10% every year
  • Stretch goals

Now these two strategies did wonders for GE, and made the company billions of dollars.

It also destroyed countless people’s lives, caused unbelievable stress, health related issues, and has led to plenty of focus on the dollars rather than the people.

Many (including me) have had it, and decided to take our leave of that cesspool of ego, 80 hour workweeks, and behavior that is more Lord of the Flies than anything to aspire to…

Yep, we’re in a transition period in business, and those that focus on people are going to be the winners.

SO, in response to my “Case against Goals” email, I got this question from a really smart marketer running an ads agency…

Brandon what was [that]…principle called about not setting big goals? Super interested…

Here was my reply…

There’s no book (although I’m sure there’s something out there given all the obsession about productivity).

It’s based on my experience actually growing businesses, and keeping a focus on people and setting them up for success.

Getting the focus upon the steps needed to execute, rather than the pure financial objectives that are overused, destroy employee morale, and kill motivation.

This may seem obvious, but fear is a terrible motivator, and financial manipulation is not a productive way to build a company or a life that you want to be a part of…  

Ok…without any further flapping, here’s a quick outline of this simple (but not easy) process:

  1. Goals should be focused on the processes (not the results). The processes are the steps you follow to get the results. Yep, you’ll still need to think 🙂
  2. Evaluate the results from the process.
  3. Adjust the process, improve skills, and repeat.

I know it’s a little abstract, so let’s break down a simple example…

Let’s say the financial objective is $1M.

I’d reverse engineer the process I need to book $1M, maybe conduct 9 application calls a week.

SO, that would be my goal.

(I avoid the $1M and I avoid the closing %, but I continue measuring both.)

It forces me to pay attention to the quality of call, and the closing %.

But, keeps me from cannibalizing future sales or bringing on a bad client.  Plus, because you’re focused on the process, you develop and refine…your SKILL.

It also forces critical thinking because our objective is to improve the process results.

And, finally you and your people are actually focused on a metric you have control over…so adjustments are much simpler.

Need to conduct 18 applications a day, ok.  Probably not enough hours to do that in a sustainable way for 1 person, so you need to bring a little help in.

Now, working through this process is actually harder than throwing some financial goals against the wall, and then screaming “always be closing”.

But it’s way more effective…for you, your team, and your health.

Happy New Year!

Brandon “Work the process” Pugsley

PLUS:  When you’re ready…here are a couple of ways I can help:

1. Email Case Study

If you have an email list of 500 or more, you may be surprised on what’s already available.  If your list is bigger…the opportunity is significant.  As a case study, I’ll work with you one-on-one and we’ll setup a few emails to send to your list and document the results.  Just put “Email case study” in the subject line, and I’ll send you the details.

2. Adding A New Revenue Stream

If you’re already making some sales with a funnel, and are looking to add an additional revenue stream to your business (I target adding 30-50K a month).  Just reply and put “New Revenue” in the subject line. 

3. Mastermind with me One-on-One

If you’d like to work directly with me to work up a detailed “evil mastermind” scheme so you can apply leverage and scale…just reply and put “mastermind” in the subject line…tell me a little about your business, what you’d like to work on, and I’ll get you all the details.

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