The Action Plan
This is the doing part. This is where you actually progress your goals, by doing the practical side of the mental processing that’s been done in all the previous planning steps – the Vision, the Values, the Why, the Goal setting.
This is the Action Plan, the To-Do list of your goals. It is the list of tasks, for a particular goal, than needed to be completed for that goal to be achieved.
Stephen R.Covey called this the physical creation, in his Habit 2. Saying that there is a mental first creation, followed by a physical second creation.
With your goal defined, in a SMART way naturally, you need to identify the necessary actions, a road map, to achieve the goal. Sometimes the actions are obvious, but spend some time brainstorming or mind mapping by your self, with a pen and paper.
- Is there a sequence the actions need to be performed in?
- Does an action have priority over another?
- Do you have the skills and abilities? Maybe you need to do some Self Learning first.
Break down the actions into single , unique, manageable activities – bit sized chunks!
Each Action should have at least the following details:-
- who else is involved and what you expect of them
- resources needed – skills, knowledge, things, tools, etc
- a date to be completed by
- an comment about the expected outcome
- potential barrier to completing the action. Things or people! Make a mental note of what signals to look out for.
Other aspects to address:-
- Are you the best person to do the action? Maybe delegate to someone else, or use a paid service to get the action done.
- You should have the necessary motivation by now, to really want to achieve the goal. Ensure this motivation is applied to every action.
Also known as the Eisenhower Matrix this tools is a simple 2×2 matrix ideally suited to daily decision making of unplanned tasks. Tasks that just popup, or are part of a flood of things than need to be done. “What is important is seldom urgent,” Dwight D. Eisenhower liked to say, “and what is urgent is seldom important.” The premise is simple