To ensure you get every drop of value out of your mentorship experience we have developed a Sustainability Mentorship Framework. Within that framework, and in liaison with your mentor, you may have explored the following
- Understanding the mentee / mentor role
- The Ice Breaker
- Exploring what your vision looks like and...
- Choosing the right goals to get there
This article is really aiming at is the creation of specific action plans for each goal that you set. We also explain why zooming in on what you have to do with a sharp focus is what will help you discover the actions you need to take.
Let’s not delay any further.
Creating specific action plans for each goal that you set
By the time you reach this part of the article, we hope you’ve done some of the steps above, or have at least imagined them so that mentally you can get right into the process.
We want you to see why developing individual plans for your specific goals is important.
- Having a plan defends against chaos and whim.
- Having a plan reduces stress and anxiety as you always know what needs to be done.
- Having a plan helps you communicate the message to others.
- Having a plan helps to focus your time in the right areas.
- Having a plan is the antidote to distraction.
- Having a plan is a great way to show progress and stimulate motivation as you tick off each action!
- Having a plan simplifies decision making- no need to take up valuable brain capacity deciding what to do as you've already specified!
Let's do it!
1) Go somewhere quiet where you can concentrate undisturbed and identify the goal you want to achieve.
2) Mind map or brainstorm all of the steps that you need to do to get towards the goal you have set with your mentor. You can do this with your mentor or your mentor can comment. Just get as much as you know about the goal and what you need to do down on paper- you can worry about tidying it up later.
3) Write each step down on post it notes. Then put them into sequential order. You might notice that some are milestones rather than tasks, (some are even sub tasks) that is fine. Get them into action order as much as possible. When you do this you might also notice that some tasks superceed others.
4) Question each task. Ask what? Why? Where? Which? How? etc and keep drilling down until you understand each task specifically. (You might want to mind map the bigger tasks and break down further)
5) Get rid of any tasks that are not significant or will have minimal impact. Refer to the 80:20 rule.
6) Add a deadline for each of your tasks that have survived the 80:20 cull.
7) Use a project management tool like Asana or Trello... or a spreadsheet.
8) Share with your mentor for comment.
- You’re not alone. Nobody says you have to achieve your goals alone, at the end of the day, a problem shared is a problem halved. Get a few trusted friends together, those who want to see you achieve your goals. Tell them the goal you want help with, and ask them how they’d go about it. Write their answers down on post-it notes. Once you have a good amount of notes, organise them by their relative impact. You can multiply your progress by choosing the right post-it notes to work on.
- Time-sensitive deadlines for short term goals. There are going to be goals that you can achieve over a matter of days, weeks, or months. If you want to make them happen, you need to be strict with yourself and say ‘OK, I’m going to reach this goal by…’ whatever day you think is ambitious but realistic. Take one particular goal and tell yourself that you’re going to complete it by the end of the month. Set an alarm, add it to your calendar, put it on your diary, set a reminder on your phone, ask your best friend to do the same.
- Break it down into the smallest parts possible- and make incremental improvements every day. As we’ve mentioned, some tasks will be chronological, some will be about impact, and some will be best dealt with on a strict deadline. As well as those type of tasks, or ways of approaching them, we want to suggest choosing one difficult goal and breaking it down into the most minute of parts. Keep asking why and how to every single process and make the guide to success so accurate and detailed that you couldn’t possibly get the recipe for success wrong.
- Stick each tiny task in your calendar!