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Coalition Building: Staying focused on your priorities

Although you may have selected priorities, narrowed those priorities and have begun working on these priorities, it can be very tempting to get distracted by many other things and no longer focus on your priorities. If you want to make an impact and see outcomes related to your priority, it’s important to stay focused. This is MUCH easier said than done. There are going to be other organizations who may change their approach and their areas of support. You may have some very “loud” members or partners attempting to get you to move toward their priority. You may also have new leadership or even weariness among your group that make it difficult to stay focused. So what do you do?  Join me this week as I provide three suggestions on how to stay focused on your priorities in the midst of many distractions and pressure from many different places.

  1. Be clear about why you selected your priority. If you clearly selected your priorities based on criteria you developed (see post from two weeks ago), then it can help you be clear about why you selected the priority. Review this decision, remind yourself and your coalition why you selected the current priority. You may want to print out your priorities on one sheet of paper and keep them posted near your desk or on your wall to help you stay clear on your priority.
  2. Schedule time to work on your priority. One of my favorite online influencers, Michael Hyatt, is often credited with the saying “What gets scheduled get’s done.” He is right. If we fill out calendars with everyone else’s priorities and don’t have time to work on our priority, we will never be able to focus on it. I have recently implemented a strategy on my calendar where I schedule most of my meetings on Tuesdays and Thursdays and schedule time to make progress on my priorities Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. Although there are a few exceptions, this has really helped me make progress on priorities and also convene coalition members and participate in meetings that may not all align with my priorities.
  3. Share progress and success on your priority. Although focusing on priorities can be difficult, it is often even more difficult to share progress and success toward priorities. We can get focused on making progress instead of telling others about the progress. Also, we have a tendency to think that since we are working on these areas that others know what we have done and the progress we have made. We need to take the time to pause, reflect, share and celebrate successes toward our priorities – even if they are small successes. This helps to build momentum among your coalition members and partners. This also helps create engagement from new coalition members. They want to be involved in something that is making progress and yielding success.

So what about you? What has worked for you in staying focused on your priorities?

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Photo by Andrew Neel on Unsplash

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