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Quick Takes: Seth Godin on goals

Seth Godin has a way of saying things that cuts through the conceptual obfuscation that most us of practice. Here's something he posted today on goals.

If you don't have a goal (a corporate goal, a market share goal, a personal career goal, an athletic goal...) then you can just do your best. You can take what comes. You can reprioritize on a regular basis. If you don't have a goal, you never have to worry about missing it. If you don't have a goal you don't need nearly as many excuses, either.

What is a goal?

Is it a measure of something, like to make $1,000,000 this year. Or is it a strategy, like becoming the banker of choice by changing how your customers experience your employees?

A goal is a focal point that we concentrate our energies to reach. It can be a number of different things. As I read the blog post, I was taken back several years ago when I read several of Eliyahu Goldratt's The Goal: A Process of Ongoing Improvement.  The book is a business novel, rather than a textbook on goal setting.

The story is built around a singular idea about goal setting. The goal in Goldratt's account is "To make money now and in the future."

If this is the goal, then every other goal is a strategy to achieve that goal. Strategies are how goals are met. So, if Seth is right,

 It seems to me, though, that the people who get things done, who lead, who grow and who make an impact... those people have goals. ...

then, goal setters are strategists who figure out how that goal is to be met.

Focus, strategic connection, follow through - all essential to having goals met.

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