Goals and Deadlines. It’s amazing what a difference setting clear goals and deadlines make for getting a project or other tasks done. For those who procrastinate and even for those who don’t, setting clear “mile markers” and tangible goals help to keep you on track and make things happen. When working with clients, we often talk about setting long-term goals (3-5 years), short-term goals (one year) and immediate goals (less than one year), and more importantly clients need to set accountability with those goals.
Road Map. This became extremely important when 1000 Cranes started preparing for the Licensing Expo in Las Vegas in mid-June. We originally had on our road map and strategic plan to have cartoon characters ready for an event in October 2014 for the National Trademark Expo in Alexandria, VA. We knew we needed to start positioning the company to expand into the children’s market, and we decided to do this through the development of cartoon characters that we would showcase at this October event.
New Opportunity! However, when we had the opportunity to showcase our company at the Licensing Expo, that deadline was moved up by four months! Fortunately, we already had an action plan in place. We previously hired an intern to help with the graphic design piece to create cartoon characters based on our logo, and we started working with a local company, ZigZibit, to help us with a new backdrop for a marketing display.
Action. As my friend from Guidepost Consulting, John Rutigliano has said, “Deadlines spur action…” because of the new deadline, we worked furiously to get our display ready for the Las Vegas event, and now we are well prepared for what will happen in October.
One important thing here is that even though we had not known that we would be selected again in October 2014 for that tradeshow, we had it on our roadmap anyway. We heard on June 15th that we would be accepted into that show again (only 35-40 companies are selected every year), and now we are well ahead of the game because our deadline moved up!
Communication Powerhouse Tip: Set and Communicate Clear Goals and Deadlines. In our case, our original deadline was October 2014, but now we are ahead of the game because we were able to communicate a clear change in the deadline and work with our respective vendors in getting those actions completed.
1) What is stopping you from getting a task done?
2) If a current deadline had to move up by four months, would you be prepared to make that change?
3) All tasks require a team. Who is on your team and how are you communicating to them when changes need to be made?
I look forward to your comments below or contact Naomi here.