Resolution to Reality


Can you believe it’s February! What happened to January? With the holidays now just a memory, it’s the perfect time to check in on our New Year’s Resolutions.

Uh oh. Have those already fallen by the wayside?

Don’t worry! This is not me scolding you for the ones already broken. We all have one or two.

This brings me to the point of today’s post. Just how do we create goals and marketing strategies that make it from Resolution to Reality?

The problem is not lack of willpower, the problem is with the goal itself. Chances are the goals for the year that you have already given up on just weren’t SMART:

Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, or Timely.

Let’s take a quick look at what this means.

1. Specific

In order to reach our goals, they need to be specific. The more specific the goal, the more we know how close we are to reaching it. It’s as simple as that.

2. Measurable

Remember when you were a kid and your parents would draw lines on the wall to see how tall you had gotten? Remember how great it felt to look back and see how much you had grown?

That’s because progress is inspiring.

Seeing how far we have come can be a powerful motivator. That is why I advise all my clients to find an accountability partner to help them measure their progress. An accountability partner is just that; someone who knows your goals and holds you accountable to them. What gets measured gets done. Your accountability partner can be an attorney in your office or a colleague from another firm. The meetings can happen in person or on the phone, the important thing is that they happen and they are consistent.

Everyone should consider having an accountability coach. I have one and find it to be very helpful.

3. Attainable

I love when people dream big. Often we are held back not by our abilities, but by our limited thinking.

Occasionally, a challenge arises when attorneys take these high expectations, apply them to their marketing goals, and make them unattainable.

One question I ask my clients- is it logical to assume the goal can be reached in the agreed upon time frame?

Do not mistake long-term plans for short-term goals. Short term goals are what make those long-term plans become reality.

4. Realistic

Most attorneys are overachievers. It is one of their great attributes. However, we do not want our assets to work against us. When we naturally cannot achieve these unrealistic goals we run the risk of becoming frustrated and giving up before we even begin. Climbing Mount Everest is a great goal, but is it realistic for where you are at right now?

5. Timely

I advise my clients to have weekly, monthly, and yearly goals. When certain goals are accomplished, more can be added to the list.

We have no way to predict what is going to happen in five to ten years. With the breakneck speed of technological advancements, combined with our own evolving lives and skill sets, we have no way of knowing if our goals or strategies are even going to be viable in five to ten years. Or if we will still want them. Our goals at thirty are going to be different than our goals at forty which are going to be different than our goals at fifty. Your marketing strategy should reflect that reality and be an evolving and flexible plan.

So take a look at your list of resolutions and make sure they’re SMART!