As you prepare for setting new goals, make sure that you understand the process of turning goals into reality.
Mark McCormack in his book What They Don’t Teach You In The Harvard Business School tells of a Harvard study conducted between 1979 and 1989. In 1979, the graduates of the MBA program at Harvard were asked, “Have you set clear, written goals for your future and made plans to accomplish them?” It turned out that only 3% of the graduates had written goals and plans. 13% had goals, but they were not in writing. Fully 84% had no specific goals at all, aside from getting out of school and enjoying the summer.
Ten years later, in 1989, they interviewed the members of that class again. They found that the 13% who had goals, but which were not in writing were earning on average twice as much as the 84% of students who had had no goals at all. But most surprisingly, they found that the 3% of graduates who had clear, written goals when they left Harvard were earning, on average, ten times as much as the other 97% of graduates all together. The only difference between the groups was the clarity of the goals they had for themselves when they started out.
Vision: The ability to visualize a future.
Man is a unique species. We are created in the image of God the Father. God is visionary. While you were in your mother’s womb, He knew you, had plans for you, a hope and a future designed especially for you. God promised that He would give us a Spirit to “dream dreams and see visions.” If you’re confused with where you are or where you are going, seek the Father, He knows your future. He has “secrets” hidden for your personal discovery.
Action: The act of bringing about an alteration by force.
Man’s uniqueness also gives him the ability to turn a vision into reality. For an example, man has the ability to sow a seed for a determined harvest. All other species simply rely upon nature’s course of action. Man has the ability to “sow” toward a future. Remember, faith without works is dead. In other words, affirmation without discipline is a delusion. The difference between a dream and a fantasy is corresponding action.
Results: To analyze the success of a determination.
Thomas Edison failed to have a determined result over 1,000 times. He said, “I have discovered one thousands ways that this experiment doesn’t work.” Our society doesn’t know how to celebrate failure. Failure is not fatal until it leads to inaction.
Pruning: To cut off superfluous matter.
Most men stop short on their pursuit of excellence. After achieving results always “prune” the process for greater results. Never think that today’s success is perfect. Jesus taught the Pruning Principle: He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful.