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30%: The difference between setting goals and being truly accountable

Updated: Feb 5, 2020

I found some statistics online about the success rate of goal setting and accountability systems from the Association of Training and Development (now the Association for Talent Development). These statistics struck a chord within me in relation to the accountability work I do with others.

“The probability of completing a goal if:

  • You have an idea or a goal: 10%

  • You consciously decide you will do it: 25%

  • You decide when you will do it: 40%

  • You plan how you will do it: 50%

  • You commit to someone you will do it: 65%

  • You have a specific accountability appointment with a person you’ve committed to: 95%”

The challenge with using these statistics though is that I can’t find the original source, so I’m hesitant to tell you that these statistics hold true today or whether the percentages have shifted dramatically over time.

However, what excites me about these statistics is that they echo what I know to be true from observing the small business owners and non-profit leaders that I get to work with: those leaders who set goals, share them, and set up accountability systems are much more successful than those who don’t.

Non-profits with strategic plans that have measureable outcomes and tracking systems; women with accountability partners or who belong to mastermind groups that hold them accountable—they achieve more and are more likely to realize the results they desire.

Let’s face it: every year in business we set annual goals. These generally involve revenue; productivity; sales; sales conversion; health; clients; and so on. We start out at beginning of the year focused on making those goals happen. We are excited, energized, driven….

And suddenly, we get bogged down by the everyday minutia of running our businesses. We stop focusing on the big picture; we forget to put systems in place to track and measure our progress; we lose sight of what we set out to do.

Let’s say the statistics do hold true. Consider the following questions:

  • Wouldn’t you rather be 65% successful by just sharing your goals with another person?

  • How hard would it be to elevate your success to 95% by being part of an accountability partnership or a mastermind group that meets regularly?

That’s a 30% improvement! All due to setting up a regular accountability meeting, breaking your goals down into chunks, laying out a plan of action, and committing to holding each other accountable. It’s not rocket science. Yet, only a small percentage of leaders set these systems in place. Will you be one?

Is a 30% improvement in your results worth you investing some time, energy, and possibly some money in becoming part of an accountability program or a mastermind group?

Looking for an accountability partner? Want to join a group of entrepreneurs who are committed to supporting one another and holding one another accountable in a mastermind group? If yes, give me a call to learn how you increase your rate of success and be wildly successful on your own terms.


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