Happy New Year and I hope that you are gearing up for an awesome 2011. If 2010 taught us nothing else, it reinforced how FAST time is moving and how it is more important than ever to plan and have a strategy for your professional and personal success. Without a plan, it is easy for time to move along and then you find that in the first quarter of 2011, nothing has really changed for you, then its spring, then we are planning for Memorial Day weekend and then uh, oh, it’s June and half of the year is gone! In this first week of January, reassess 2010, how you spent it and more importantly how you ended it and if you haven’t already done it, ask yourself the question, what has to happen in 2011 for you to say, “wow 2011 was an awesome year!” ?

Pick 5 things that need to happen for you to look back on December 31, 2011 and say that 2011 was the best year yet. I suggest that of the 5 things you choose, pick two things that need to happen professionally, two things personally (these could include, health, relationship, financial, material goals), and one thing spiritually. In order to accomplish each of these goals, I suggest that you come up with a 3 month and a 6 month plan as to how you will get there. For example, let’s assume that one of your professional goals is to position yourself for a promotion this year. In the first month of this year, you should sit down with your manager or boss and make sure that he or she understands that this
is your goal for this year, articulate what you think you need to do in order for it to happen and more importantly solicit their response on the plan and understand whether or not in his or her mind, you are eligible for a promotion and what the key requirements are for or obstacles to getting there. Assuming that there are no obstacles, and the promotion will be based on your concrete performance and the your relative performance to your peers, then put a plan in action to put real “points on the board” in the first quarter of this year. If you are in sales for example, set a goal to increase sales with existing clients and strive to bring in 2-3 new clients in the first 90 days of this year. Set a schedule for check in meeting with your boss at the 6 week, 9 week and 12 week mark. If you are an engineer, set stretch goals for the execution of the project that you are working on and more importantly define them as stretch goals with your boss and the proceed to meet and hopefully, exceed them.

The key of planning for your success this year, is to 1) understand what success at the micro level (in your bosses mind) and in YOUR mind, set a time goal for achieving the success and put a plan in action that you will execute by DAILY.

In this weekly blog, I will commit to providing you with tools and perspective that will help you maximize your success professionally. Each week, I will add some perspective on the tools of the trade that I have learned and I will also answer questions that have come in from readers of Expect to Win or that I have received from people that I have met on the road or at various speaking commitments.

You can also e-mail me questions at [email protected] I will of course, answer the questions without reference to the name of the person asking the question

Let’s all have an AWESOME 2011!!!!