Love Business

Goal Setting is So Last Year

6 years ago, Written by , Posted in Blog Posts

This topic reminds me of Darren Shirlaw’s story of being asked to speak at an accountancy forum in front of 100 delegates who were talking about setting goals and deadlines. When he stood up and said he didn’t agree with deadlines, he created a near riot and everyone was against him. The moral of his story was, stick to what you need to do and you’ll get there faster without a constraining deadline.

My love & admiration for Ed Percival, my colleague, fellow coach, teacher, survivor, pope and all round good egg, knows no bounds. I love his monthly reflections… are his beliefs and mine around goals & Vision………..

“Goal setting is so last year. It has been taught for as long as I can remember by all the teachers – except a couple.

I hold Darren Shirlaw in the highest regard as a thought leader. One of the reasons is his willingness to challenge the herd.

One of the limitations with goal setting is the attachment of a deadline. According to the herd, a goal is only such if there is a time attached to its achievement. Remember Stephen Covey? In the late 1980s, he taught me that direction is more important that speed. If you’re heading in the wrong direction, try going twice as fast and see how much faster you arrive.

Now consider this – are you living your vision, or is there a way to go? If not, what’s the predominant feeling that your life / profession / business is producing for you right now?Now go to the future and describe what would be happening, what you would be doing, what your business would be doing. In that future vision space, what is the dominant feeling that activity would be producing? Let’s say it’s pride. Just a guess. Now come back to today and ask what you could do today that will produce the feeling of pride. So the feeling of pride (or whatever you came up with) is your compass. It enables you to set direction. Therefore you can start to live your vision tomorrow. By keeping your vision alive in this way, you lose the attachment to time. The outcome you’re aiming for will probably happen sooner. There’s no sense of loss when you hit the outcome like there was in goal setting.

The Inka fromPeru, who inform the Healing the Light Body School with their ancient beliefs, call this process dreaming the future into existence.”

Mr King once said “…I have a dream…” He didn’t say “I have a goal”

If you would like your own monthly copy of Ed’s “Reflections” emailed direct to you, please send an email with “Subscribe” in the heading to and you can follow Ed on Twitter @edpercival

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