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Two Easy Ways to Improve 2017 – Plan Ahead

At this time of year much is written about setting plans and goals for the new year. There are hundreds of programs and tools to help you do more to build a better YOU.

That is all fine and well. Successful people set goals, make plans, and know how to execute. After all, the key word of being an executive is execute. Right?

But with all of the chatter out there about goal setting, is there a simple but powerful way to think about getting your vision set, plotting a course, and then getting it done? I personally know some great mentors and coaches who do part of that, but might not help you with all of it. Let’s face it, the most elaborate project planning tool (goal tracking system) doesn’t work if you cannot execute.

In his landmark book on leadership “The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership”, John Maxwell defines one of the laws as “The Law of Navigation”. Being a leader requires more than catching a vision. Leadership requires strong effective navigation skills. As Maxwell writes “Anyone can steer the ship, but only the Captain can plot the course.”

Navigating your business and personal life takes on many challenges. All of us who have had command and control of a large project and organization know how tricky the navigation can be.

Buried in the middle of some great leadership training written by Maxwell, there is a simple nugget of gold. Maxwell’s advice is this simple acrostic – PLAN AHEAD – that provides a reminder of the major steps involved in navigational leadership. Each letter stands for a vital aspect of how to execute your plans and goals:

Predetermine a course of action.

Lay out your goals.

Adjust your priorities.

Notify key personnel.

Allow time for acceptance.

Head into action.

Expect problems.

Always point to the successes.

Daily review your plan.

Think through the last major initiative you led or the last big organizational push you championed. Wouldn’t these 9 reminders have helped you do a better job of making things happen? ARen’t the the very things that happened when success was achieved or failed when you missed the mark?

Use this simple PLAN AHEAD method to organize your plans and objectives for the new year.

From all of us here at HeadwayExec, Happy New Year. Best wishes for a great and prosperous 2017!

PS- If you or anyone on your leadership team is looking to grow their influence as a leader, then we should talk. Contact us here.