October 2, 2017
Joe Fairless

50/50 Goals: Turning Short-Term Failures into Long-term Wins

The concept of 50/50 goals is that 50% of a goal’s success is based on achieving the quantifiable outcome and 50% is based on identifying a lesson or skill that you can apply to your business to improve results in the long run. As opposed to 100% of a goal’s success being determined by the achievement of the specific target.

For example, let’s say you set a goal to syndicate 5 deals this year, but you only complete 3. If 100% of your success is tied to completing 5 deals, then you’ve failed. You feel discouraged and letdown. Maybe you even drop out of the investment game all together. However, if 50% of your goal is completing 5 deals and 50% is the takeaways you can apply to your business moving forward, you are successful, or at least “feel” successful. By going through the entire process of closing 3 deals, the experience gained, lessons learned, and new skills adopted will have a positive effect on the business 1, 5, and 10 years down the road, even though you technically failed to meet your short-term goal.

Since we are committed to long-term success and thinking in terms of decades and not years, these skills and lessons can be, and likely will be, more important than the quantifiable result, especially in your early years. It is like the compound interest effect, but instead of money, it’s skills. If you learn a skill year one, it’s a part of your repertoire indefinitely. For example, you create a podcast and your goal is to record a podcast once a week for a year. But at the end of the year, you only recorded 40. Again, if you’re success is 100% dependent on recording 52 podcast episodes, you’ve failed. However, with the 50/50 goals concept, all the skills you obtained and relationships created account for 50% of your success, and will likely have a greater long-term impact on both your podcast and your business than not having launched the podcast at all.

Back to the first example, if you fail to complete your 5 syndication deals, but on your third deal, you met a 5-star property management company, that additional team member may earn you more money in the long run than you would have made on those two extra deals without finding the manager.

Ultimately, this concept, and the resulting mentality shift, allows you to approach situations with a “glass half full” mindset rather than “glass half empty” mindset. Two people who set the same goal and achieve the same quantifiable outcome (i.e. 3 syndication deals in one year instead of 5) can feel the exact opposite. The individual whose success is 100% dependent on completing 5 deals will feel awful. Whereas the individual whose success is 50% dependent on completing 5 deals and 50% dependent on identifying skills to apply moving forward will identify what they did right, what they did wrong, what they need to do more of, and what they need to do less of, and will feel motivated going into the next year.

Reframe the way you look at goals. No longer think of success as being 100% dependent on reaching a specific outcome. Instead, cut that in half and focus the other 50% on identifying systems, skills, techniques, or lessons learned from the process of striving for a specific outcome.

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Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this blog post are provided for informational purposes only, and should not be construed as an offer to buy or sell any securities or to make or consider any investment or course of action.

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