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Saturday / May 18.
HomemilastwordThe Last Word: Time to Lift the Ceiling

The Last Word: Time to Lift the Ceiling

We all know the value of goal setting. Robert Collier, one of the first self-help authors penned that goal setting has the ability to help us “see things as you would have them be instead of as they are”.

For most of us goal setting is second nature. In a haze of seasonal goodwill, our goal setting is manifest in annual declarations that, this time, healthy habits really will triumph. We set ‘to-do’ lists, wish lists and bucket lists, create vision boards, develop mission statements and even, sometimes,
hire ‘life coaches’.

Too often, though, these goals are really no more than wishes, backed by vague desire and abandoned when the daily routine of life distracts us. Perhaps because we’ve let too many of our own aspirations fall by the wayside, we engage in that grand Australian tradition of lopping the heads off those tall poppies who not only set audacious goals, but dare to actually achieve them.

Recent news that 25 Specsavers’ stores had achieved weekly sales figures of AUD$100,000 – and that one had achieved a record AUD$69,000 in a single day – was met with disbelief, even disdain, by many. Sure, it’s a Specsavers store. That’s always going to touch a nerve for those who believe that the rise of global corporates signals the demise of independents.

They set a clearly defined goal… thought creatively (then) implemented the strategy…

But, what if, instead of ‘dissing’ the $69k day, we ditch the outrage, and see it for what it was… an amazing example of setting a goal, backing it with a strategy and then working hard to achieve it.

Yes, the Robina store that achieved this record day is a very large practice. Yes, it is in a prime location. Yes, it has many optometrists and a large support staff. Yes, it is backed by the might and advertising budget of a multi-national giant. But the owners of this store didn’t just make a wish and hope it would come true.

They set a clearly defined goal, ensured staff members were fully committed to it, thought creatively about ways to achieve the goal, then energetically implemented the strategy.

Your practice may never have a $69K day. But with five staff, your goal may be to have a $10K or $15k day. What goals have you set for your practice? Are they goals… or just wishes? How will they be implemented? When? Is your staff committed to them? Too often, our business goals are of no more substance than our annual resolution to get fit/lose weight/stop smoking.

“This year we will increase business revenue/patient numbers/sales…” Really? By how much? By when? What’s the strategy for achieving this? In other words, is it backed by anything more than vague desire?

The late great author and motivational speaker Zig Ziglar said “a goal properly set is halfway reached”.

Start by working out what you want to achieve and set your goal. Then, make it audacious enough to lift the ceiling off what is possible in YOUR practice.