What happened to goal setting and accountability?

As I travel around the car business I am amazed how few sales people write down their personal sales goals and/or monitor their own personal achievement.  Is it possible that in corporate America – or for that matter any other segment of America – where people refuse to accept personal accountability.

I listen to continual attempts by sales staff to blame management for performance short comings.  But then the same thing goes on in all public school classrooms.  We wonder what our education shortcomings are attributed to?  I have news for you – no one is willing or able to hold students accountable for performance or behavior.  I spoke to an inner city white, female teacher on the airplane and I asked her this simple question, “Are you allowed to tell a student walking down the hall to pull up their pants?”

She burst out laughing and said, “No way!! Are you kidding, his parents would be down my throat for saying that to their son!”

So here we are back in corporate America, making sure no one’s feelings are hurt and no one is being held accountable for performance.  And we keep blaming management!

When those who do write down their goals and monitor their personal performance are 95% more likely to achieve their goals, why wouldn’t everyone do it?

Good question,  When you write down your goal, let us say for this month in the car business, let’s consider the dynamics that come into play.  Let’s say I write down that I plan to sell 20 vehicles this month.  At the end of the first week let’s say I sold 3 cars.  I will then review everyone I am talking to, I will review our database and see if there are others I can begin to work to try and find where my other 17 units will come from.

At the end of the second week, I have 8 units sold.  Instead of making excuses and accepting the fact that maybe I will not get my 20, I even more determindley review what do I have to do to make it happen.  I don’t give in or give up.  I believe I can still make my goal and stay positive.  I make up my mind to do whatever I have to do to find those other 12 units by the end of the month.

When we are not so focused we can too easily just say at this point.  “Oh, I was hoping for 20 units but it doesn’t look like I will make it.  Maybe next month?”

If your life is filled with excuses for not being all you can be, maybe you need to write down your goals or commitments and monitor your own performance?  Life can too easily be filled with regret when we do not take personal responsibility for where we are in life and what we are doing in life.

In closing, I am also amazed how few people give any time to considering the spiritual side of life.  When we consider eternity is forever and life on earth is as a fleeting moment, maybe the spiritual side of life is more significant that we give it credit?