If you’re like many in my social media feeds, you’ve picked your word for the year or even three words. A well-chosen word acts like a guide.
Why not take it further and try a picture?
We’ve all heard that a picture is worth a thousand words. It crystalizes everything. A picture can represent an accomplishment and embody a feeling. It can transport you to another time. When I look at a picture, my mind adds sound and makes it come alive.
If a word exercise is powerful, try an image. Make your chosen words its caption.
“I believe that visualization is one of the most powerful means of achieving personal goals.” -Harvey Mackay
I know someone who swears that goals are more achievable if they are visualized.
Put up a picture on your refrigerator of your dream home. Years ago, when I was a child, I had a vision of my future home and sketched it out on paper. Once, when my parents came to visit us, my mom stepped back and couldn’t believe it. “I’ve seen this house!” she said, “You drew this as a kid!”
The other day I posted the best book covers. The artists and designers who create book jackets deserve recognition for the outstanding job they do. Whether we realize it or not, the cover is often responsible for drawing us in.
Kicking off this year, I am thinking about the goals I have for the year. The book covers offer a metaphor for our goal-setting process.
Glancing at a book cover, we judge the content and the author. When strangers look at us, like it or not, they often judge us in the same way. They take a look, and judge on our appearance. Unfortunately, this is common before anyone even understands our story.
MOST NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTIONS FOCUS ON THE COVER
Is your goal this year to lose weight? Stay on that diet? Exercise more? Eat healthier? Like a book cover, we often focus on how the world sees us by focusing on our physical appearance. We don’t stop there. We also think about our reputation. Reputation defender services now help combat unwanted or unfair reviews online.
The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. -Lao Tzu
I can hear some of you saying, “Wait. Skip, it’s the inside that matters!” Some of you may be thinking about the verse in Samuel: “Man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart.”
I love what Jim Rohn said about that thought. He said, “Work on the outside for people. Work on the inside for God.”
NEW YEAR GOALS
If your life was a book, you would want the cover to be an award winner, and you would want the narrative to be superbly written. Design your goals the same way.
Keep your external goals. Losing weight may be just what you need. Regular exercise may just save your life. Eating more vegetables is always a good idea. But make sure to add internal goals to your list.
1. Divide your goals into two lists: the cover and the story.
A COVER goal is anything that is visible. This list could include such things as quitting smoking, getting a better job or obtaining your ideal weight. Anything that is seen by other people and the outside world goes in this column.
A STORY goal is what’s on the inside and goes into the second column. Do you want to be a better friend? How about being less critical and more positive? What are your spiritual goals?
How do you take talented individuals and turn them into a winning team?
How do you create a winning culture?
Is it possible to use adversity to your advantage?
What team is the greatest of all time?
I asked Ted Sundquist all of these questions and more.
Ted Sundquist played fullback at the U.S. Air Force Academy, winning the 1982 Hall of Fame Bowl and the 1983 Independence Bowl. He later served as a flight commander in Germany before returning to the Academy and coaching. In 1993, the Denver Broncos hired Ted as a talent scout. Ted was named General Manager of the Broncos in 2002. Today, Ted is an analyst for the NFL network, a radio personality, a commentator and a blogger. This year, he added author to that list with the publication of Taking Your Team to the Top.
Ted, you’re known for grabbing talent others passed over. How were you able to see potential where others saw problems?
I think first and foremost you have to identify the talent pool that you’re dealing with. Understand where the best and the brightest come from that can contribute to your industry. In professional football, that’s dealing with the entering college football player pool, as well as players already in the NFL, and those available on the street (free agents).
Leading a team in any capacity is not a right but rather a privilege. -Ted Sundquist
Then you have to have a VERY good understanding of what traits are necessary in these individuals in order to execute the plans & procedures required to pursue your mission. One size doesn’t fit all when it comes to football, and I’m sure that’s the case in other arenas as well. We had prioritized our requirements prior to searching for those individuals to fill our positions of need.
You must be as detailed with the back end of your prospect list as you are with the top candidates. Look for those individuals that fulfill your priorities in the Critical Factors, those traits which run “vertical” through the organization and are analogous for every person on the team, regardless of position. Know which factors are most important and which you can “live with.” Then have a thorough breakdown of the Position Specifics, those skills necessary to fulfill a specific task required of the candidate.
Ensure that the positions are evaluated from various angles within the organization and not from a single viewpoint. This eliminates personal bias and provides for a crosscheck of opinions. Mistakes made on the front end of the selection process are difficult to correct once the player is on your team.
Greeting linebacker and team captain Al Wilson after a hard fought win on the road.
If you take the time to do your homework, finding the pool of talent, identifying what’s most important to your team to accomplish the mission (Critical Factors [vertical traits] & Position Specifics [horizontal traits]), and then implementing an evaluation system from multiple angles & crosschecks . . . your chances of making mistakes are minimized and you’re more apt to find the best and the brightest talent to execute your plans towards goal achievement.
“The culture should reflect the mission.” Ted Sundquist