Do you realize that as Labor Day approaches, that 2008 is three-quarters over…. Are you where you wanted to be as 2008 rolls to a close? A good friend and member of one of the mastermind groups I belong to, Andrew Finkelstein, recently wrote a very good article on planning. He has generously allowed me to excerpt from it.

Setting Yourself Up for Success—Doing the Right Thing

by guest author Andrew Finkelstein


Let’s face it – the first step of setting yourself up for success is having the desire to do just that. Without the desire, that real sense of “wanting to” that “fire in the belly” type of energy, that success, or at least the type that I am envisioning for you will never occur. So exactly how do you get the necessary clarity to be successful?

First you have to define what success looks like. And this takes a bit of work. But that’s ok, because it is guaranteed to pay off. And I’m not making this up.

In 1970, sociologist Dr. Edward Banfield of Harvard University wrote a book entitled, The Unheavenly City. He described one of the most profound studies on success and priority setting ever conducted. Banfield’s goal was to find out how and why some people became financially independent during the course of their working lifetimes. He started off convinced that the answer to this question would be found in factors such as family background, education, intelligence, influential contacts, or some other concrete factor. What he finally discovered was that the major reason for success in life was a particular attitude of mind.

Banfield called this attitude “long time perspective.” He said that men and women who were the most successful in life and the most likely to move up economically were those who took the future into consideration with every decision they made in the present. He found that the longer the period of time a person took into consideration while planning and acting, the more likely it was that he would achieve greatly during his career.

Here’s how to do it

#1 – Take the time to look at your life and get to the core of what makes you tick. My mentor, Michael Gerber, author of The E-Myth Revisited: Why Most Small Business Don’t Work and What to Do About It calls that your “primary aim”. It’s the source of your vitality, your passion and your energy. It’s how you love to be and being your best. And write it down!

#2 – Create a set of annual goals, both personal and professional. The more the merrier. Then ask yourself what you want to accomplish in the next 90 days and write those down. Attach them to your calendar for review in 90 days.

#3 – Take a clear look at your business and create a strategic objective for it. In other words what will it look, like, feel like and perform like in say three to five years. How many people will be working in the business, serving how many clients, selling how much retail product producing what level of sales and profits. Make sure that your strategic objective is written down. It only has to be one page, two at the most.

Have a great day in whatever your adventure,
To Success! To Life!