While reading through the list of proposed sports for the 2020 Olympic Games, I noticed a new sport was being added. It is called “clayless pigeon shooting.”

The concept is remarkably similar to the traditional clay pigeon shooting, except there is no target. The shooter lines up at the stand and calls, “Pull!” The trap button is pressed, and nothing comes out. The shooter fires—at thin air.

After this goes on all day, they hand out medals for the three people with the “highest” score, and everyone goes home happy.

Does this sound ridiculous? Of course it is. Obviously I have made up this situation to demonstrate how utterly absurd it would be to have a competition where you have no idea what target you are aiming at and, therefore, absolutely no idea how to keep score in the event. You can’t kick a goal if you don’t know where the posts are. Or to put it another way, if you aim at nothing, you will hit it every time!

The silly part is that this situation happens to so many people in their business lives every day. They have no idea what the target is or what they are aiming at, yet they turn up to work each day and shoot that shotgun into midair without any way of measuring their success (or otherwise).

My advice to businesses is that you should have a formal goal setting and achievement tracking process in place. Make sure you set goals because without them, any destination is achievable but most are undesirable.

Once you have goals set in place, then have a formal process that reviews where you are in relation to those goals, and if necessary, set new goals that keep driving you to further heights.

Once you know what you are aiming at, you have some chance of hitting the target, and if you miss, then you are at least going in the right direction!

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