There’s a long-running daytime show that my grandmother used to watch that started every episode with the statement “like sands through the hourglass, so are the days of our lives.” I find that statement carries more weight now than it ever did in my childhood. As a business leader, that tagline gives me a sense of perspective as to just how compelling vision and strategy are to ensure that we make the most of each and every day.
As we begin the New Year what do you want your practicing days to look like in 2019? And how do you plan to make that happen? Goals help you intentionally focus on directing your energy toward specific outcomes you intend to achieve. Your goals can range from setting target production and collection numbers for the year to purchasing a new piece of technology or expanding locations and growing your team.
Whatever goals you determine to be the ones you want to focus on in the year ahead, I encourage you to utilize this simple five-step process of accomplishment that we use with our clients at Jameson. The method of setting goals consists of the following:
-Writing down your business goals
-Designing the plan
-Determining the person(s) responsible
-Setting a timeline
-Evaluating the goal
Once you have that process documented (a form has been included for download), you are on your way to accomplishing them! Here are three keys to remember to make your goals become part of your daily life versus just a document in a file gathering dust.
1. Take Action
During a recent training session, I heard a great quote “The how is very important in business, not just the why.” Goal accomplishment becomes infinitely more achievable when the focus remains on the steps and how to reach the goals outlined in an efficient and effective way. While the why of the goal is undoubtedly vital, don’t forget to stay focused on how you can achieve the stated goal. In the blizzard of busyness that we experience in our dental days; delaying moving goals forward can become an easy pitfall when avoiding making decisions and not delegating requests or obtaining the required resources. Don’t lose sight of the outcome you want to achieve and the necessary steps to get there.
As you set your business goals don’t forget to share them with your team; and more importantly, explain how your team contributes to the achievement of that goal. When people have a sense of ownership in the cultivation of the goal and a comprehension of how their role impacts making that goal a reality, they are far more likely to drive their designated responsibilities to reach the goal. Cathy Jameson, the founder of Jameson Management, says “a great dental team is a group of leaders working cohesively toward a common set of goals.” Share your goals and revisit them often so that the team of leaders around you can be empowered for growth.
3. Celebrate and Clarify
As you reach milestones and accomplish individual goals, be sure to celebrate that achievement! If you find yourself getting distracted or losing focus on what you want to do, don’t be discouraged. Ask yourself, what is keeping me from being able to reach this goal? Is it time for the goal to be changed? Are you still interested in pursuing that goal or do you want to create a new one? Don’t be afraid to clarify where you are with the process and to change course as needed. The sand in your hourglass is finite, it will run its course, and as our Jameson sales coach, Jeff Gelona always said, “We only get so much sand. Don’t let anyone waste your sand.”
Here’s to the best days of your lives in 2019 as you reach your practice goals!
Put Your Goals to Action!
Amy Logan Parrish is Chief Development Officer for Jameson, an international management and marketing firm that strives to help dentists and teams become more productive, more profitable and ultimately more fulfilled in their practicing lives. Amy focuses primarily on growth and development both for the company as a whole and for the individual team members that makes up the company’s dynamic culture.