Setting Goals (Photographer Style)
Have you ever sat in a room with no distractions and really put 100% into thinking about your future?
If not, go get a pen & paper and start by writing whatever comes to your mind!
By setting goals you are forced to think about the future and to turn your vision of the future into reality. When I was attending my marketing class I will always remember Covey's habit
"Begin with the end in mind"
You will want to create a long-term plan based on your vision statement, tasks, and milestones. Your long-term plan needs to be flexible as you can't predict the future. Try to keep your goals small and incremental, and don't be afraid to revisit your plans frequently.
For example: "I intend to add four new images to my portfolio every month."
Five key ideas to keep in mind
- Be precise. Keep track of dates, times, and amounts so you can measure achievement. If you do this, you will know exactly when you achieved the goal and can feel satisfied with its completion.
- Set priorities. When you have several goals, give each a certain level of priority. This helps you avoid feeling overwhelmed by too many goals and helps direct your attention to the most important ones.
- Keep operational goals small. Keep the low-level goals you are working towards small and achievable. If a goal is too large, then it can seem like you're not making progress towards it. Keeping goals small and incremental gives more opportunity for rewards. Derive today's goals from larger ones.
- Let the plan fit you. It's encouraged that every morning you start your creative work first thing, before the regular day begins and you have to tend to your business tasks.
- Revisit your plans frequently. One day a week, truthfully answer these questions:
A. Have I been keeping to my everyday plan?
B. Have I been keeping to my long-term plan?
No days off. I'm a workaholic.
You will have days that are full of photo sessions but then there are days that you're not shooting. On these kind of days pick up your camera and capture what is around you. These type of photos don't need to be perfect but it will help you to keep you from having a creative block. You can find inspiration in anything and it can even restore, calm, and connect you on an emotional level.
Lastly . . .
- Don't be to harsh on yourself. You should consider who or what inspires you, as this will help to keep your main goal in line.
- Breaking down your main goal into smaller items will help you achieve your main goal faster and cause less distractions. (For example, contact all clients in the database over the next six months.)
- Setting boundaries to help manage priorities (For instance, spend less than $5,000 on new equipment, or take only 45 minutes for lunch.)
- Keeping a visual board can help you visualize your goals which will make your goals more important and real.