Why Top Achievers Set MASSIVE Goals #CIPDMAP15 

After a bustling and energising day meeting fellow HR and L+D professionals I’m getting comfy and bringing my attention to our Closing Keynote by David Hyner of Stretch Development titled ‘SMART goals DON’T work! – and why top achievers set MASSIVE goals’. 

David opens his plenary with self-deprication to engage “I know what you’re thinking, a small fat man from Birmingham…and I am”! Then leads to how we have to accept others, and we all make assumptions. He asked us: Do people make assumptions about you? Do you make assumptions about people? 

He thinks it’s worse when we make assumptions about ourselves. 

There’s reaching transparency about David’s approach, and he has laugh from the room in the first 5 minutes.

Those assumptions about ourselves are often based on “rubbish we were told as a child”. Our belief systems are based upon untrue assumptions and these now guide our thinking. David wants to know why are we using SMART goals on programmes including MBA and those in Harvard. The inventor of SMART goals actually wrote “not intended for goal setting”. David excudes passion for changing our beliefs about setting SMART goals.  

ASSumptions Vs Truth: David tells us 3 things and we decide: 2 truths and a lie. Only 6 people got it right, and there are 200 in the room. What if out of 200 things you think are true only 6 are? What if…just 5 minutes a day you found out what you CAN do!? Pick one of your limiting beliefs to find out if you really can’t do what you think you can’t do…and you will amaze yourself.

David asked Tim Watts how he sets goals:

Tim believes SMART goal set people up for mediocracry. David exclaims “If you’re teaching it to you kids STOP. If your delivering it in L+D STOP”.

David asked everyone for their MASSIVE goals and takes someone up from the audience who’s goal is to be a HR Professor. First, brainstorm all the things you need to do to make this big goal happen. Then plot these actions on a pyramid with the most important at the bottom first:  

Advice from a fellow HR Professor in the room “it can be done”. David suggest we change the language from ‘can’ to ‘must’. 

David talks about To Do lists and our motivational energy levels …do you save the hardest toughest jobs to the end of today when this is low? He asks the goal-setter “if the only thing you had to one was [one of these tasks] could you do it”, the answer each time is “yes”! 

David recommends a ‘Mastermind Group’ to support your development, not a group of friends, a group of people who will challenge and hold you accountable. He suggests that everyday we can do one thing to take action towards our goal.

Q: how do you eat an elephant ?

A: one bite at a time !

He ask us to share the pyramid, “teach it to your kids. Use it in L+D”!

David talks about Cows and Rhinos. Which are you? Staying with the herd, safe, familiar, with friends. Or one of the 3% who are Rhinos. They see what they want, and charge. Without pause to think of all the reasons not to or all of the barriers in the way. “Let’s Go Rhino”! David appreciates we all have Cow-days, and shares a technique to shift from Cow to Rhino through anchoring (defined here and captured below)… trick your amygdala into positive state:  

AND he’s a magician! 

What an inspiring man with a thousand stories. A mix of psychology, good thinking and entertainment, delivered with energy. Mostly I loved David’s Jason-Statham-esque comments spoken closely into his clipped on mic! 

[This blog was written live in session at CIPD Midlands Area Partnership conference 2015 in Hinckley, Leicestershire on Saturday 3rd October. My intention is to capture a faithful summary of the session higlights, but my own bias and views may also litter the blog. Please excuse any typos, and don’t hesitate to join the conversation on Twitter @Jo_Coaches #cipdmap15].

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