Do have a vision of where you want to be in 5/10/15 years?
I call this Plan A. I have always had a ‘version’ of Plan A. Many versions, in fact. But that’s alright. For me, it was important to have clear goals and objectives for my future, at all times – even though I knew that at any time these plans would change dramatically – or even vanish.
If you have a vision without a plan, it most likely will not come true. Without a plan, and a sound execution strategy, your vision of the future will always be just that – a vision.
What is the secret to making ‘Plan A’ a reality?
- Develop a clear vision of the goal. Understand that things change over time but the clearer that picture is, the easier the plan will come together. What exactly is it, where is it, how does it work, why will you build it, for whom and so on. As much detail as possible as early as possible
- Be flexible and agile because as things change over time your dream will change. This is reality. My vision 15 years ago allowed me to start a plan. However, when it all started to take shape, it looked a lot different than many years earlier. We cannot be stuck on one vision and one plan. As any good project manager knows, managing change is the key to success.
- Develop a strong plan with room to maneuver around your current day job and around other commitments in your life. Give the dream lots of time to become a reality. And very importantly give yourself key milestones over time so that you can see short wins and not have to wait the full 15 years.
- Listen. Listen to advisors, friends, family and especially others already in a place where you want to be. Part of my journey certainly involved strategic discussions with professional speakers who could offer me guidance, wisdom and ideas as my plan started to take shape.
So yes, dreams do come true but not without a clear vision, a strong plan and a lot of hard work in the execution phase. But take it from me… it is well worth the journey.