I’ve used action plans to help me focus my efforts. Especially when my goals tend to outsize the state of my efforts. So a great way to ensure that I’m able to focus with deliberate action is to create an action plan and attempt to stick with it.
A quick note before proceeding: this is a mostly unedited draft. If you have questions or you need further clarification, please leave a comment or DM me on Twitter (DMs are open) and I’ll do my best to answer.
Here’s an example of how to set up an action plan:
- Area of Focus – is this career, health, social, personal, hobby, etc?
- Specific Goal – create a specific and measurable goal that realistically achievable in the next 3 months
- Reason for Accomplishing this goal – be honest
- One obstacle that is in your way – be honest
- Three-step jump start – three steps that you can take that are specific, incremental, and actionable “i.e. use the insurance company website to locate a podiatrist near me; ask Billy for a recommendation; and ask Uncle Tim for a recommendation” Tip: drill your actions down to the smallest steps required to move you forward.
- Estimated time required to achieve the goal – for example, “I will spend a total of 4-6 hours hours to find a doctor, make an appointment, drive the appointment, fill out paperwork, and see the doctor.”
- Metrics – “one appointment with a podiatrist”
It wouldn’t be the first pivot in my career. But it seems quite closely related to what I’m interested in.
I use the concept of apprenticing to learn about areas of HR. Usually, some experience in HR or an area function is necessary. And while I looked to move into an L&D role, I thought about potentially gaining some experience in recruiting to learn more about the L&ER side of things.
I’m still working through my action plan, but it’s a proven method that works for me.