Episode 87 – 2021 Success Map Series | Actions & Accountability

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Across this 5-part podcast series, I chat with co-facilitator of Leaders Who Give A Damn, Becky Hammond from Isogo Strong on how to create your success map to learn from 2020 and set your sights for success in 2021. We cover topics such as growth mindset, reflection, goal setting, actions, accountability & partnerships, and word for the year.

In this episode, we delve into actions, accountability and partnerships. Like the last few episodes, we will walk you through this one using the Success Map 2021 workbook.
We speak about how to chunk down goals with tangible steps, the differences between accountability and support, plus how we need to use discernment when choosing the things we want to action.

Key points:

  • Big goals need to be chunked down to actionable baby steps
  • Goals don’t just get met by being out there
  • Doing ALL of the things just makes every day overwhelming
  • You need to enjoy the process of achieving your goals.

To create your own 2021 Success Map, head over to the Leaders Who Give a Damn website for the free resource which contains the workbook for this podcast episode


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Becky Hammond  00:00

 Well, hello, good morning. Good afternoon, Murray. Looking forward to this next conversation as we walk through the rest of the success map.


Murray Guest  00:22

I’m really looking forward to this conversation to Becky, great to be chatting with you. Again, we are working through the success map. And we are up to page four, which is the last page. And we’ve got two conversations to go. This first one is a really important one about taking action early in the year on those goals that you set in our last conversation, and also the importance of support and accountability partners. And then our last conversation that we’re getting up to after this is one I’m really excited about too, which is all about that word or the phrase for the year that’s going to ground you and we’ll talk about that, that’s coming up.


Becky Hammond  00:57

But I know you’re getting excited about it. I mean, that is your thing. So we will get into that for sure. So I have to say one of the things I love about this success map is that it is only four pages, like this is not like I’m going to plot out every thought and feeling I have for the entire last year and for the entire year head. But it’s a really manageable doable chunk, especially for leaders who feel very busy. I mean, if you’re a leader, you probably are very busy. And so I love how this kind of can just walk you through in a bite by bite, chunk by chunk, doable process. So I love that and if you have not yet downloaded it, you can do that over at leaderswhogiveadamn.com/successmap2021. So let’s get into this episode about taking action.


Murray Guest  01:55

Yeah. And I know how important is to take action. And you have Achiever in your Clifton Strengths at the top, and you are such a powerhouse at taking action. And it inspires me and I love how you do that. And you’ve shared stories and leaders who have that Achiever and they they take action. And for those people like me that maybe don’t have that as high, I find this process or this system really helpful to actually go and write what what are those things I can take action on? What are those things that are going to help me work towards those goals that I’ve set in those areas we covered in the last conversation, whether it’s health, finance, your career, business, spiritual connection, families, all those areas. But we want to start the year strong, and take some action. Becky, what would you share honestly, that you know helps in taking action and moving things forward? What’s going to help leaders in doing that do you think?


Becky Hammond  02:56

You know, I think some of the things that we just came out of, so those three big takeaways, or maybe it was your big, audacious goal for the year, it can feel just kind of like an elephant, you know, and there’s that African proverb that says, ‘How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.’ Right? So it’s all about baby steps. I remember in seventh grade, I had a friend convince me to try out for the basketball team. And it was really fun. And we had practice before school. As seventh graders, I guess that’s where now the getting up early is ingrained in me. But a friend of mine and I would take a small step, we knew we had to get back to class. But we also knew that we had permission to go from basketball to class. And it really didn’t matter how long it took us. So we took tiny little baby steps all the way there. And for some reason, when I think about like breaking a goal down into smaller, like doable bites of the elephant, I think about those little baby steps that we took all the way down the hall. It’s like, yeah, we’re going to get there, we’re going to get to the end. But it really is not going to happen unless we just take one step in front of the other and do something that really feels like I can see that point. I can’t see all the way down the hall. But I can see that point that’s right in front of me. And if I take that step, it’s going to get me closer to meeting my goal.


Murray Guest  04:18

I love that analogy, that is so fantastic. And I can imagine you just taking those little steps. Yes, we’re moving forward. Yes, we’re going to get there. And we’re working towards where we need to be but you know, at our own pace, at the pace that works for me that suits me every morning after basketball practice. I also think about how important it is to actually do something. And I think so, for me, I think about sometimes my fitness or if I want to read a book or you know, invest in some learning, or the leaders that I’ve worked with or that I know you’ve worked with Becky, where it’s about taking action and I think what can happen sometimes is we get into that mindset of it’s all too big, I just won’t get around to it or it’s too big of a problem, I’ll get to it another time, or I’ll start my fitness program tomorrow. I’ll improve my diet tomorrow, all those sorts of things. And I think this is really about, okay, we’ve got some clarity in those goals. Yeah, but let’s start to take action, let’s start to move forward. And as you said, baby steps. It could be honestly for someone, it might be quite a big step, it might be that you might have identified something in your your personal development, your professional development as a leader, and you need to go and invest in some money or enroll in a course need to get that done now at the start of the year. So let’s go and make sure you take that action and do that now. Yeah, or you might need to get your team together. I was talking to a leader the other day, and their team has felt disjointed with COVID, everything like that, and so there’s a need to get my team together, I need to make that happen. So if you wait to the end of this first quarter, we’re going to be into April, sometimes it’s going to be too late. So yeah, we want to take action. That’s the key thing.


Becky Hammond  06:06

Yeah, there’s a couple of leaders that I’ve worked with that is just coming to mind, one from last year, and then one again, a different person at the end of this past year. And both of them as leaders of other leaders really wanted to make sure that their annual reviews were really time well spent. And so they’re like, Okay, so how do we figure out how to make this happen. That would be like, the bigger goal, like, okay, I want this to be time well spent that I’m writing all this stuff down for them, then my employees writing all this stuff down for me, and that we’re having this long meeting, I want this to be time well spent. And I loved what they came up with, which was that they’re going to add two more meaningful or kind of different angle questions that will get at something different. And so one of the questions that they asked was, ‘what are you worried about this year?’ So they put a twist into their annual review, so that they could get at that bigger goal of making this annual review much more valuable. And that little step really didn’t take that much, right? It just took thinking about that bigger goal and what it might take, and then they changed the language, added a question. And then they were done. So it doesn’t have to be big. It doesn’t. It can also be just a small little tweak. But it takes some thought and intention about what those goals are. Goals don’t just get met by being out there.


Murray Guest  07:43

Yeah, there’s a video that I’ve shared with a number of clients over the years, which just so beautifully illustrates what we’re talking about here. And it’s a conversation with Tom Bilyeu from inside quest and Simon Sinek. And this great conversation goes along the lines of Simon Sinek asks Tom, ‘Do you love your wife?’ He says, ‘Yeah.’ And he says, ‘Well, how do you know, or how does she know? And when did that happen?’ And he said, ‘It’s not when you say I love you, it’s all the little things you’ve done over the years, which have demonstrated that love. If you brush your teeth every day, it doesn’t do anything. But if you brush your teeth once a year, you’ll get teeth problems, you’ll have plaque or health problems.’ He said, ‘You need to brush your teeth every day for two minutes to make sure that you are having healthy teeth.’ Same as if you go to the gym once you don’t look totally different. I’m not going to look like Hugh Jackman tomorrow. But if you go to the gym every day, you’re working towards that goal. So it’s about, as we’re saying, take those steps, invest in that small conversation. I love that example you just shared or whatever it might be that you’re working towards, in your goals, take that action, make that step and keep doing it. So you’re working towards that goal.


Becky Hammond  09:05

Yeah, and I don’t know about you, maybe this is an Achiever problem, you can tell me, I just feel like, there are many times where I put that goal out there. I mean, I feel like this happened when I first started my business, I put this goal out there and then I just wanted to do all the things. Like I thought, Okay, like if I start a podcast and I blog every day and you know, book three clients a week, and I do 12 coaching calls a week, like if I do all those things, then I’ll have this successful business by the end of the year. But really what I ended up doing is it ended up making it so every day was overwhelming. And so instead of doing one or two really good things, I kind of got buried by trying to do too many things. But in my mind, both of that thing was what was going to get me to my goal. So there’s definitely some kind of piecing it down a little bit, or is this just an Achiver problem?


Murray Guest  10:04

No so I’m going to share a story with you Becky and I’ve talked a lot through Leaders Who Give A Damn and collaborating for a while. But this is a fresh story. A few years ago, actually would have been about 12 years ago, I had to go to New Zealand to audit a supplier. And staying in the hotel, I was over there for work of course, I went, I’ll go to the gym, and you know, at this point in my life, I was not a regular gym goer, but I’ll go to the gym. The hotel has a gym, I should use it. So I go to the gym and work out. And let’s just say I went a little bit too hard too fast. The next day I am meant to be walking around this supplier auditing their premises. So I’ve got my audit checklist, checking on quality standards and a few other things. I could not lift my arms. I honestly my arms were so sore in my biceps and my my forearms. So I was obviously doing something wrong at the gym as well. I had to walk around with my arms by my side, trying to write down my notes because I couldn’t even lift my arms. You’ve just reminded me of that story as a great example of trying to go like, right let’s get in and do it. I didn’t go to the gym again for another couple of years, I’m sure.


Becky Hammond  11:33

Yeah, so it’s one way to blow your goal is to make yourself feel like, wow, that’s completely unachievable. Because look what it did to my body, right, or what it did to my schedule or look what it did to my psyche or look what it did to my team, even you know, if you’re like, Okay, now we’re gonna do a stand up meeting every day, because we want to do that. And I want to have a meaningful question that we ask, and I’m gonna talk about each of them about their strengths. And it’s like, all of a sudden, your fun meeting that you’re having to bond your team together is an hour and a half long, and everyone hates each other.


Murray Guest  12:11

I’ve seen that play out Becky, where people have been on the leadership course. And they’ve listened to something and they’re like, right, I’m gonna do all the things with my team right now. And then team members think, has this person been brainwashed? They just tried to, you know, drink too much of the Kool Aid and then do everything all at once. Okay. And it is about chunking it down, bringing people on the journey, doing bit by bit by bit. So yeah, if there’s anything out of this conversation besides laughing at me and my sore arms, it is that insight around, Okay, so you’ve got some goals at the end of 2021, what it looks like, what it feels like, what this is for you. Now let’s bring it back. What does that look like for you in Q1? And even if you want to start thinking about going to do something, and there’s an action, but I might leave that to Q2 or Q3. I’m going to space it out a bit. And that’s hopefully going to set you for success by chunking it down and moving you forward. And I really think that will, as opposed to doing everything right now or doing nothing right now, neither of those are going to work.


Becky Hammond  13:18

And you know, we talked last week about goals. And then you reminded me about the mindset around goals. And this talking about Q1 and Q2 and Q3 also reminds me of it’s not that there’s the pursuit of happiness, and happiness is that I have achieved my goal at the end of 2021. But rather, it has to be that you are enjoying the process to get there. Otherwise, you’re going to come up short, almost no matter what.


Murray Guest  13:52

100% Becky, it is such an important point, that if we set up for a goal, which is something along the lines of whether we articulate it like this, or we think about it like this, that I’ll be happy when I achieve this, or I’ll be happy if I have this. We’re setting ourselves up for trying to be happy in the future all the time, as opposed to enjoying the learning process, or the year or the days right now and being happy with that right now. So I think the goal setting and a gratitude process go strongly together. But don’t attach your happiness with your goals or something you’re working towards for growth or as you said, pursuit of excellence, whatever it might be, but that’s separate to your happiness, your happiness is what you’re getting in other areas of your life, whether that’s connection with family or things you’re doing with your team as a leader or other things you might be doing. It’s not about ‘I’m going to be happy when I get this’. That’s a really good point.


Becky Hammond  14:51

Yeah, and I think 2020 has showed us that right? It showed us that we might set out to do a certain thing and it just might not end up the way we think. And I think some people felt extremely rocked by that, at least even if it was just for like a dark middle, right? If there was just like a dark middle of like, Oh my goodness, I’m not gonna do any of these things that I charted to do this year. And so what does it look like to still maintain an attitude that keeps your spirits up and keeps you moving forward, even if you don’t end up hitting that target at the end of 2021. And so what made me think of that is just like talking about each quarter, right? Like, okay, maybe there’s something here and maybe there’s something here too, and maybe Q3, by the time you get to Q3 if things have changed, then you have the opportunity to adjust again, which adjusts what the goal looks like.


Murray Guest  15:49

And we don’t know what this is going to be like. We didn’t know what 2020 was going to throw at us. And we still don’t know, we’ll never know what any year is going to be like. And of course, last year was totally different. But if we have at least some structure in place that’s going to help us deal with the ups and downs are going to come ahead, that’s for sure. On page four, when we set out actions, there’s also that column around support and identifying someone to support us there. What I know for myself, and for people I’ve worked with over the years, we are stronger together. And this is, and I know with the partnership I have with you, Becky, that we are stronger together, the knowledge, the inspiration, the strengths that you bring to our partnership is so important. And I know that with the leaders I’ve worked with that the best leaders are leaning on each other, they’re leaning on each other’s strengths, they’re collaborating, there’s a support there that helps them achieve what they’re trying to do in a collaborative way. So my invitation for people as they’re doing this part is to really think about what support you need to achieve this next bit who you need to help you or who’s going to bring something to the action to help you move forward.


Becky Hammond  17:09

And there’s also an accountability partner. Is there a difference between that? Like, would you say that the person who, or the partnerships that you kind of bring alongside you to support, might be different than the person that you bring in for accountability?


Murray Guest  17:24

Yeah, I think about some of the leaders you’ve talked to me about before, where they are achieving great things, because someone is their cheerleader, or someone is making sure they do what they say, or someone is making sure that they deliver on their promise. Because with the business of life, we can start to slip. So that accountability is making sure we’re staying on track. So yes, slight difference. So support is who do I need to help me to achieve that goal or work on that action. Accountability is who’s going to make sure I stay on track. So for example, in my world, support might be my wife, actually, Tammy helps me with getting things done. Whereas Becky holds me accountable, makes sure I deliver on the things that we talked about and now the business that we’ve we’ve got running. So it’s different things like that. Well, how have you seen that play out for you back in some of the leaders that you’ve been working with?


Becky Hammond  18:24

You know, I think of it in terms of the best leaders are the ones that have regular feedback conversations. And so I’m thinking of it right now. It’s like, well, they’re doing that for their team members. So you as a leader, are you also getting that maybe you have another leader that’s hopefully doing that. And if not, you could ask for accountability in that. And, you know, it reminds me of getting up to go to the gym in the morning. Actually, there are no gyms at the moment, so getting up to work out. If I don’t have somebody to meet, I’m much less likely to do the thing, right. Even as I’m a teacher to our kids this year, if you know, the leader has asked us to send a picture of this activity that we did together, I’m much more likely to do it than if I didn’t. And that’s just you know, it’s relatively inconsequential type stuff. And so, you know, the best leaders are those that can systematically put that into their practice, do it intentionally.


Murray Guest  19:37

Yeah. And I think there’s a really valuable insight here from a leadership perspective around this is not about creating more work for yourself, but how you can hold people accountable for what it is that they said they would do. And as leaders, as coaches, if you’re working with your team, what’s something that that person in your team you’re getting them to do, or to work on, are achieved? And what support do they need to do that, and you might be holding them accountable in your one-on-ones and catching up with them. As a coach, with the people I’ve worked with, it is very much about how I might support them in the coaching conversation, but also might hold them accountable in some follow up. ‘Hey, don’t forget, you said you’d do this. So make sure you loop back with me and that you’ll do that.’ But generally, the support is who else in their circle and the leaders that that I’m working with, are they going to have to help them achieve those goals as well? So yeah, bit of difference. And I think it’s really important to actually identify those people. For each one of those actions.


Becky Hammond  20:38

Yeah, I think some of the questions that you’ve come up with challenge me as well to figure out like, who’s your cheerleader, who’s always going to be in your corner. It can’t be somebody that you are going to feel beat down by if you don’t end up following through on something, but also that you don’t want to let them down. Like, there’s someone that you care enough about that you don’t want to let them down so that you’re not just going to be like, Well, you know, I get a pass because they like me so much. And, you know, they never actually hold me accountable. But really, yeah, I don’t want to let them down. I want them to see the work that I can do and to know that I’m going to follow through on what I said I was going to do.


Murray Guest  21:17

Yeah, I think about someone that’s going to challenge you in that constructive way, that’s going to challenge you in a way that that lifts you up, that maintains that self esteem and that motivation for you to move forward. Because you know that they care. And we talk about that in Leaders Who Give A Damn, it says leaders that care, and you want to have those people who are going to hold you accountable that care about you as well. So I’ve loved chatting to you about actions and taking action. And I’d love to hear how people are taking action in the success map process. So if you’re taking action, of course, put it in our Facebook group if you’re a part of our program, or definitely on social media and tag Becky and myself, because I’d love to hear how this is helping you in that mindset of taking action and moving forward towards your goals in 2021. And we’re about to see you next week for a final conversation about your word or mantra for the year. And I look forward to sharing that and how that can really help you work towards those goals.


Becky Hammond  22:16

That sounds awesome. And as always, if you do not yet have that success map, you can find that at leaderswhogiveadamn.com/successmap2021. And if you haven’t joined us yet, I hope you do. There are three episodes prior to this that can help walk you through the first three pages. And in our next conversation we’re gonna open it wide up and give you the tools to be able to really set your vision and your everyday steps. So looking forward to that next conversation. Thanks, everyone.


Murray Guest  22:51

See you next time.


Becky Hammond  22:52

Bye bye.


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