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This mindset is based on the Apollo Principle by Marc Winn. It is extremely helpful at understanding how breaking down large goals into smaller, manageable chunks ensures all people involved are aware of what they are required to do, and thus help you achieve your goal.
If you look at the Apollo 11 Moon Landing in 1969, in 1961, President John F. Kennedy announced the national goal of landing a man on the Moon and returning them safely to Earth by the end of the 1960s. This was, seemingly one huge, slightly overambitious goal, but the goal was achieved, and has never been achieved since.
However if you look at how it was planned it would have looked something like this:
- Lift Off
- Reach Moon’s
- Lift Off
- Reach Earth’s Atmosphere
- Enter Earth’s Atmosphere
Well, this now seems a bit more manageable – 8 clear steps to achieve the goal. However what was then needed was all the actions that made up each of these milestones. In order to achieve Lift Off, a long list of actions, with a huge team involved, each with clear tasks assigned to them would have been necessary. And deadlines – I’m no rocket scientist, but I’m pretty sure there were a whole host of actions that couldn’t be completed unless someone else had completed theirs.
And it’s the same in business. If you have a turnover target for your business for the year – what are the milestones going to be? If you want to achieve turnover of £100k, what will that look like? £25k each quarter? Or will you need to scale gradually? Perhaps £15k, £23k, £27, £35k? (Most importantly when setting goals, you need to know where you are now! You might want to look at our Now Where How blog post to help you understand this).
Now that you have your milestones, what are the actions going to be to help you achieve them? You might need to hire some social media support, or SEO specialists. Perhaps you need to pay for advertising. You might need to prepare a launch of a new product or service. Who is involved in helping you achieve these milestones – list EVERYTHING, and assign every action to a person, and give that action a deadline.
And remind all those involved that their small action will be one small step towards achieving the larger, greater goal.
If you are looking to plan effectively for your business, you may wish to check out some of our other posts. If you’re ready to take the step and be guided through the process, why not look at one of our upcoming Business Plan workshops – designed to help you kickstart the process. Larger businesses, or those with multiple owners, may wish to opt for our 1:1 business planning service. Please get in touch to discuss your requirements.