Checking and Adjusting

January 4, 2012 at 4:18 pm Leave a comment

As we begin 2012, many people are going into the New Year with dreams, and in some cases with goals and even in a few rare cases with plans to reach these goals. (In an earlier blog, I made the difference between dreams and goals. See Even for those with solid plans, one of the reasons for failure is because they’re not making adjustments to the plans.

Of course, it is impossible to know beforehand an original plan will be successful. When we start with a plan, we have the belief that if we complete the activities outlined in the plan, we will reach the desired outcome. So, in a way a plan is like a theoretical model in which we test the underlying assumptions when we start to execute.

While it is obvious that having a plan is no guarantee of success; few people take the time to check and make the necessary adjustments. Here are a few tips that will help in keeping track on where you are with your goals and make adjustments when necessary:

• Take measurements at critical junctures: If you want to lose 50 lbs by the end of the year, don’t wait until December to take your measurement.

• Don’t measure only the outcome, measure implementation as well: To stay with the weight loss example, you might have planned to enroll a trainer by a certain date, go to the gym 4 days a week or eat X number of calories per day. Having measurements on the process (how to get to the goal) will help identify what’s working and what’s not working Often the reason the plan is not working is that we are not doing exactly what we set out to do. To be able to measure how well we are executing the plan (“measuring the process”) implies that we have a well thought-out plan in the first place.

• Make adjustments promptly: If the current plan is not working, go back to the drawing board and look at all your measurements. Were all activities performed in the plan as they were laid out? Which activities could not be completed?

In the end, planning is not a once and done process but a continuous process in which once plans are developed and deployed, they are checked on regular basis and then adjustments are made and the adjusted plans are deployed.

Entry filed under: Business, Sucess. Tags: .

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