This is where the 90 Day Plan comes into play. This is a great tool to clarify what you want and to help you complete the most important activities that will move you forward.
How It Works
The 90 Day Plan is a simple career hack that can be described in 7 steps:
- Identify your key areas of focus. For this exercise I’m using the 6 key areas of focus for work/life balance.
- Identify the short-term goal, outcome or objective that you want to accomplish for each key area of focus.
- At the beginning of each week, choose 3 specific actions that will move you toward any of your goals.
- At the end of the week, review your progress and choose 3 more actions for the next week.
- Repeat this process over 90 days (anywhere between 12 to 14 weeks). Stay focused on your original goals, choosing 3 additional actions that will move your closer to achieving them.
- At the end of 90 days review your progress toward your goals. This is the time to celebrate all your hard work. Well done!
- Now it’s time to repeat the entire process again. Clarify your key areas of focus, identify your outcome or objective for each area, and choose 3 specific actions each and every week for the next 90 days.
Why It Works
There are 5 reasons why the 90 Day Plan is so effective:
1. It helps you define your priorities.
By limiting to the number of key areas of focus, the 90 Day Plan guides you toward defining your top 6 key areas of focus. It also helps you define your number one goal for each of these areas.
2. It helps you clarify your objective.
Each area of focus is limited to one outcome or objective. Once again this helps you to define your priorities and narrow your focus.
3. It helps you choose your 3 actions each week.
This is where the power of the 90 Day Plan comes into play. Each week, you choose 3 specific actions that will move you closer to achieving your goals.
4. It helps you build momentum.
As you complete each action, it will take you one step closer to your goals. You will find that each step becomes easier as you constantly complete your actions each week.
5. It helps you deal with the unexpected.
This process is flexible enough that it gives you the freedom to deal with the unexpected and take advantage of opportunities. It also provides just enough structure to keep you focused on your priorities without feeling confined or boxed in.
Bonus: 3 Tips to make this more effective
1. Limit the number of goals for each area of focus to just one. This forces you choose the most important goal for each area of focus. In addition, don’t change your goals for the 90 day period. This helps you build momentum.
2. You can use this for any area. The example that I’ve used for this process is work / life balance. I’ve used this process for leaders, managers, technology professionals and entrepreneurs. The key is to identify the top 6 key areas of focus for that specific role.
3. Don’t try to do too much. When I completed my first 90 Day Plan I over extended myself by have 10 key areas of focus with multiple goals for each. Within a few weeks I was quickly overwhelmed. When you are first starting out stay within the limits of 6 key areas of focus, 1 goal for each area and 3 actions per week.
The 90 Day Plan in 7 simple steps:
- Identify your areas of focus.
- Identify 90 day goal for each focus areas.
- Choose 3 actions that you commit to complete this week.
- Track your progress through the week.
- Repeat steps 3 and 4 for the next 90 days.
- Review and celebrate your progress after 90 days.
- Repeat process again for the next 90 days.
The key to achieving your goals is found within each small action. The 90 Day Plan is the perfect balance of structure and freedom that will keep you focused on your priorities and on track to complete your most important projects in record time.
How Great Leaders Become Great Leaders
FREE DOWNLOAD: The Step-by-Step Guide for New Managers, Team Leaders, and Change Agents to Lead with Confidence