Mission Accomplished?

Good morning Tash Appreciators,

This week and next are big weeks for folk starting out in my line of work: some be starting their training; others will be moving into the job they’ve been working towards for up to seven years; but others will be going into something that they’re not altogether sure about.

I suppose it might seem that the people who are going into the jobs they want have got it made. While achieving a goal is worth celebrating, my concern would be that the energy and momentum which built up to allow the goal to be achieved could be lost if it’s not built upon. I’d also be wary of celebrating too early – you wouldn’t want to look like this guy:

Tash Friday 29:8:14 2

Over the last few months, I’ve picked up a strategy that deals with all of the possible scenarios listed above. I picked it up from a guy I’ve been doing some work with and again when I was reading up on the Scottish entrepreneur Jim McColl (incidentally, this speech which Jim McColl gave is particularly good). It might be worth passing on the strategy as I’ve found it to be effective while I’ve been working on Operation Zorro. It’s not rocket science but, like most sensible strategies, it involves hard work and persistence:

  1. Ascertain what your goal is and develop a plan to help you achieve it.
  2. Put the plan into action and give it as good a go as you can. Persevere with it.

Steps 1 and 2 were about as far as I’d got until fairly recently. It seems obvious now but I hadn’t thought of the remaining steps.

  1. Regularly assess your progress to ensure that the plan is taking you towards your goal. If the goal is achievable in the short/medium term, it’s probably worth assessing how effective the plan is every week or so. If it’s a longer-term goal, it’s likely that progress will not be as fast and it can probably be reviewed once a month.
  2. If the plan is not effective, think about changing it. What worked with the old plan and what didn’t – revise it to keep the effective parts but dump the ineffective ones.
  3. Repeat steps 3 and 4 until a plan which is entirely effective is found and the goal is achieved. If the goal is achieved, take time to enjoy it then go back to step 1.
  4. If you are still not achieving your goal, maybe it’s the wrong goal. That’s not to say that the goal you’ve set is impossible, it just might not be the right time or right for you.
  5. If step 6 is required, take time to deal with the disappointment before you proceed to step 1 again. Be honest with yourself about why things have not worked out; be honest with other people about it; then, when you’re ready, take that disappointment and use it to fuel your efforts next time around.

I didn’t know it at the time, but I found myself unwittingly at step 7 once – I didn’t work hard enough at school and I didn’t get onto the uni course that I wanted. It worked out fine in the end though: the course which I ended up doing was fantastic and my fear of feeling that disappointment again has driven me ever since.

My point is that the mission is never accomplished. In a world as diverse, interesting and troubled as ours, there is always something over the horizon waiting for us. The question we have to keep asking ourselves (and I know I bang on about it) is: what’s next? The more I think about it, the more I’m convinced that asking that one simple question will keep you motivated and moving forward.

Anyway, to this week’s Tash – he was a man who must have felt at several times during his life that his mission was accomplished, only for it to be taken away from him. He had a successful company; lost it; got it back; only to lose it again when it was at the peak of its success. This week’s Tash is Steve Jobs:

Tash Friday 29:8:14

Have a great weekend folks!

What’s next?



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