Your purpose gives you a special assignment. This world must change because you came. In the article Operating in Your Strength Zone we looked at the importance of knowing how you are wired and what you are wired for. Purpose is the reason why you were born in that family, that town, that country and for such a times as this. You carry something special for this generation. The value in you is the gift you were born to deliver to humanity. Purpose provides your life with an assignment and gives you a sense of significance. Your success is hidden in your purpose. How do you manifest that success and execute your special assignment?
Let me share with you an anecdote from my life. I had the privilege of working for telecom entrepreneur Mr Strive Masiyiwa for many years. I learnt a lot from this business maestro. One morning during company devotions he was sharing from the scriptures on purpose and vision. He shared that “the one who knows why (purpose) will always be the leader and the one who knows how will always have a job” He touched my shoulder and said “Young man, who do you think is going to be the General Manager in Guinea? Learn French and prepare yourself” This was when Econet Wireless was still only in Zimbabwe and Botswana. He had already seen what none of us could see, back then – the power of vision.
That day was a defining moment for my life. I decided that morning that I wanted to be the General Manager in Guinea. At the time I was not ready and I knew it. I had no experience just loads of ambition. I set out 3 simple goals. Firstly, I enrolled for an MBA programme to get a grasp of broader business issues. Secondly, I worked on profiling myself through initiatives both inside and outside the company (the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) recognised my expertise when they contracted me to assist telecom operators and regulators in African countries with strategy and the Balanced Scorecard) Lastly I went to Alliance Francaise to learn French. Six years later I was ready for the “Guinea challenge” when I worked for Econet in French speaking Burundi for a short while. I achieved all my career objectives in Econet and transitioned with a deep sense of satisfaction.
What is the point? The lesson from this story is when you know your purpose, have a vision and set goals to maximise your potential you will definitely meet with success. That is my message to you this week.
Purpose Gives Birth To Vision
Your vision is your special assignment. Vision is the picture of purpose. It is the compelling destination of your life. Vision is where you must go with your life or what you must accomplish based on your purpose. Vision is the ability to see beyond one’s natural eyes and start acting on it. I never had thought in my wildest dreams that I would work in Burundi. The inner eyes saw it before my natural eyes could see it. I studied French when I really didn’t need to, but the vision to open up opportunities for myself beyond the English speaking world motivated me. When you know your purpose you do not wait for the future, you create it. I want to challenge you – don’t wait for the future, create it today. You already know why you are in this world. What are you waiting for?
Keeping The Vision and Purpose Alive
Do not just have a dream or vision, wake up and act on your dreams. I could have spent six years fantasizing or even praying about working in Guinea and not do anything about it. I set some practical goals to make sure it didn’t remain just a vision. Action is the manifestation of your vision and purpose. Without goals the vision will perish. Set the right goals and pursue them. Goals are the cogs on the wheel of purpose. They will keep you focused, energised and disciplined. If you don’t know how you are going, you will go nowhere.
Set simple, defined, written and measurable goals. For example if you set a goal for financial independence and security … clearly state that you will be investing USD200 per month. Success only comes from the discipline of goal setting according to your purpose. The world is full of dreamers and less doers. Goals are a serious aspect of your life because they are tied to your purpose – so they represent your life. If goals represent your life, then you must guard them jealously. Be careful what you do, how you do and with who.
This is a year in which you must flourish and experience manifold increase in every way. Stay in your purpose, run with vision and aim for goals.
NB: If you need a template for setting personal goals please write to me on firstname.lastname@example.org