You know that kindergarten game, Duck, Duck, Goose? It goes like this: You and your friends sit in a circle and one person walks around tapping each of you on the head, saying “Duck” until they tap you, and yell, “Goose!” Then you jump up and try to catch the person before they sit down in your spot!
It’s a perfect analogy for how a lot of us think about tactics and strategy. We often don’t get the results that we want until we ignite a strategy that makes the tactics we use have meaning.
How do you know when you need a tactic as opposed to a strategy? Most of us have heard that familiar saying, “We won the battle, but lost the war.” Or, “I won the argument, but we’re getting a divorce.” Sometimes even when we win, we lose. The key question we need to ask is, “What’s the outcome we want to have over the long term?”
Maybe because we are not asking the right questions, we’re making this rookie mistake:
Rookies focus on the win
You’ve probably experienced this once, or if you’re like me, more than twice. You’re excited about a new opportunity and you can’t wait to show what you know; but in your rush to show, you learn very quickly that what you didn’t know bit you in the a–!! If only you had slowed down, you would have avoided that painful lesson or lackluster results.
What do you focus on?
Veterans focus on the win over the long haul
They employ their skill, knowledge and experience to win, just like the rookie, but the veteran doesn’t fall for the tactics, he or she is thinking in much broader and longer terms. Veterans are veterans for a reason. They’ve figured out that, sometimes, they have to slow down and be extremely clear and intentional about their next steps.They know that if they aren’t clear, they can end up wasting time and money. Veterans start with the “end in mind” — the big picture — like having a vision for their company’s growth over the next 3, 5, 10 or 20 years AND they employ the same big picture thinking for their life, as well.
When you don’t have a vision for your life or business over the long term, your goals tend to be narrow and tactical in scope. Don’t get me wrong, tactics are necessary and very helpful, but tactics need to be used in conjunction with an overall strategy that serves the vision that you want to have for your in your business and in your life — if you want a life and a business that makes you happy and successful over time.
Take a look at this graphic to the right, and you’ll start to see the relationship between tactics, strategy and vision.
Tactics – targeted plans and methods to get you what you want.
Strategy – is the framework and planning you use to make your vision a reality. It is made up of the tactics that will get you what you want in the long term.
Vision is the driving force behind your choice of strategy and tactics.
I want to now focus on the personal side of things, because using this skill of having a vision, developing a strategy that will accomplish that vision and breaking that strategy down to tactics you can accomplish daily or weekly is the fastest and most effective way to make the life you want to have real.
Begin with the end in mind — Steven Covey
Your life has to mean something so important to you that it transcends circumstances, experiences, or any toy that you can purchase.
What would you have to do and who would you have to be to live your life without regret?
If you decide that you want to begin with the end in mind, you need to have a vision to do that, but also, a strategy that serves your vision. Maps and journaling are great tools to work out ideas for big outcomes. There are many resources on mapping and journaling to help you do that. Just google Business Map, Life Map, or vision journaling. You can also go to my Etsy shop here for my fun exercise on Life Visioning.
One of the best strategies that I know of to support your life and business visions is to have amazing clarity – the kind of clarity that high performers use consistently over time to get results.
When you have clarity, it makes things a lot easier. You know what to do, when to do it, you save time and money, but more importantly, clarity gives you energy to get the important tasks done. The more clear you are about what you want, and most importantly why you want it, the more you take the actions necessary to make your goals come true.
Brendon Burchard came up with a framework that can give you unbelievable clarity and that will serve as the basis for any vision you create. There are four key areas of clarity. They are: Self, Social, Skills and Service.
- SELF — Who am I when I am at my best? Who do I need to be in order to make things happen?
- SOCIAL — Who do I want to be in my relationships? What tone do I want to use? Where is my focus?
- SKILLS — What skills do I need to develop so that I can accomplish my goals? What are the prereq’s?
- SERVICE — How do I want to contribute and show up in the world?
These questions in the “Final Four” can help you to gain unbelievable clarity in service of your overall life and business visions.
So, the next time you hear the metaphorical “Goose!” What are you going to do so that you win before he or she tags you? An overall vision in business and in life, strategies to serve those visions, tactics to serve those strategies, and the most important tool of all – clarity – will help you to not only operate as a veteran, but to win faster and more effectively.
If you liked this blog post, please share it with your friends. Sharing a little vision and clarity goes a long way!!
The accompanying video to this post will be released tomorrow on You Tube. You can follow me there or on the following social media outlets to get even more great free tips, tools, and strategies on high performance that help you live a life that makes you excited and proud to call your own.
Thanks for reading and until next time,
Remember, you are so much more than who you believe yourself to be!
Christine Jeffrey, CHPC