Does your plan feel like you are lost in the Sahara Desert?


Copyright: anton_petrus

For twenty plus years I have coached, mentored, and trained men and women from all walks of life, business, and countries.  All of these people have the same basic challenge – NO GROWTH PLAN!  Without a GROWTH PLAN you will be forever wandering in the desert of life and in the desert of business. When you were in elementary school, middle school, high school, college, or even a trade school or community college each of these schools had a GROWTH PLAN so you could move on and graduate.  So, what happened then? 

I can tell you what happened, but you aren’t going to like my answer!  Once an individual graduates, they stop growing under the false assumption that they have acquired and learned all they need to learn to go out into the world and succeed in their chosen profession, and it doesn’t matter what that profession is either. 

This my friend is a recipe for failure, stagnation, and frustration.  When a person finds out they don’t know as much as they need to know in order to succeed, they do one of the following:  1. Throw up their hands and give up, or 2. They start a desperate internet search trying to gain “self-help” in their perceived area of weakness, or 3. They look to those individuals in their respective area of work who are three to five years ahead of them on the success ladder and ask for mentoring, and 4. Many look to their HR departments to see if there is help in the form of coaching to help them devise a plan for growth.

You are going to need several things in order to grow a tree in the vast wasteland of today’s business and life environments.

First:  You need to have the right plan.

Second:  You need to have the right growth environment.

Third: You are going to have to surround yourself with the right people.

Fourth: You need to be keenly aware of where the greatest GAP is in this process.

Let’s take a look at these one at a time, shall we?

First: The RIGHT Plan

  • All success requires a plan of action.
  • Without a plan of action, you are in a car with no map or destination.
  • Where are the areas you see you have a gap or a place you need to grow? If you have had a yearly review, perhaps there were some clear indications of where those areas are.
  • If you find yourself, let’s say at a level 6 in an area and you want to be at a level 8 climbing your way to a 10, or “Exceeds,” then what do you need to do in terms of a goal to grow one or two steps up?
  • Make yourself a growth chart by area and set those goals for each area. Remember you must be very specific in what you are reaching for or you will have no hope of achieving that goal.
  • Once you have those goals, what are the incremental steps to reaching each one. If you need help, ASK!
  • You are going to need an accountability partner with whom you can check, say once a quarter to see how on pace you are with achieving your goals.

Second:  You need to have the right growth environment.

No matter where you are in the business or organization you work in, the last thing you want to be in “alone” in the process.  No one gets anywhere alone!  Ditch the “lone ranger” – “superhero” mindset.  This will keep you stuck forever. 

What do you need?  You need the right growth environment!

  • Look around you, there are already groups of great people who want you to succeed!
  • Choose a couple of these great people and go where they go. Events, places, get togethers etc.
  • Great, successful, growth mindset people READ! I can bet you haven’t picked up a book since you graduated, not even that HR manual.  You thought you’d just wing it!  Start with one book a month, that is twelve books in one year.  If you need suggestions, ask those great people what they are reading. 
  • Set aside time each day to read a chapter in your book. You waste lots of valuable time looking at social media, so stop that.  Social Media will not grow you or your career.

Third: You are going to have to surround yourself with the right people.

  • Develop an inner circle of trusted successful, honest individuals who will tell you the truth about how you are doing.
  • These people should compliment your weaknesses.
  • You can also get a mentor [many companies have mentoring programs].
  • You can get yourself a coach [many companies have internal coaches available to you].
  • An outer circle of friends is also beneficial to you. These folks compliment your strengths!  They help you see the BIG PICTURE!


Fourth: You need to be keenly aware of where the greatest GAP is in this process.

  • This may be the most important of all these four points, because most people are blind to their gaps.
  • Most people do not know where the greatest gap is.
  • The greatest gap is between KNOWING and DOING!










We all need an accountability partner to keep us on track.  Do you need an accountability partner?  I’m right here!  Remember “Just Ask” above?  Shoot me an email and I will be glad to help you stay on track!