This is the time of year when everyone starts coming out with their predictions for what 2011 is going to be like.  Here’s the problem I have with this: Who holds these people accountable for the wild comments they make?

Certainly it is not wrong to have a comment.  Everyone is allowed to have their opinion, but who says we have to listen to it?  I’ve been inundated with so called “experts” telling me by way of emails, phone calls, websites and meetings what is going to happen next year.  I imagine you have received some of the same messages.

Do yourself a giant favor — Ignore them!  First, very few of the predictions being made are made with any credence or fact to support them. Second, even if they are made with fact and logic, who is to say that is what is going to happen? 

When we listen to these predictions, we start to put into our mind little seeds of belief that wind up sprouting into major beliefs that we ultimately support as fact.   An example I like to use is the one economists love to throw out about how they expect the economy to grow next year by 3%.  (Don’t forget that these are the same economists who somehow missed the call entirely about what has been happening to our economy the last several years.)

I don’t care if the economy is predicted to be up by 3% or even down by 5%.  I’m not building my personal goals around either of them.  If my personal goal and sales goals are to build “my” business by 3% next year, then there’s no reason at all for me to even be setting goals.

Let’s get real — 3%?!?    Why waste our time.  My personal sales goals are centered around a minimum of 10% growth. I’m talking me (you’re talking you).  I’m not setting sales goals for the largest economy in the world.   My point is that you’re the one who is going to achieve your goals. Somebody else isn’t going to achieve them for you, because if that were the case, they wouldn’t even be your goals. 

Let me express this a little differently. We hear predictions about 2011 that are macro in nature.  They’re big picture, encompassing a lot of different factors and a very large set of numbers.  When we set personal sales goals, they’re micro in nature. They involve us — a far smaller universe and one over which we have way more control.  

Set your goals, and do so without the influence of the goals and/or predictions for the nation.  When you start looking at things in your individual frame of reference, you can start disregarding completely the wild predictions of the media and others.

I’m not saying all of this to tell you to blindly come up with numbers that have no meaning.  No, I’m saying all of this to help you develop numbers that are your numbers —  numbers for which you know you’ll have to push, but in the end will represent you and your expected accomplishments.   In my book, this is authentic sales motivation — creating goals and objectives that I own and I have a plan to achieve.

Copyright 2010, Mark Hunter “The Sales Hunter.” Sales Motivation Blog.

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