January 17, 2013 — 3 Comments


Before we can act with intentionality, we have to think with intentionality.  The reality is, most of us do not.

More often than not, we catch what we pursue – not what we envision.   Contrary to some popular views, we aren’t successful by just visualizing what we want.  While we need to look ahead and establish what it is we are trying to achieve, if we only recognize one piece of the puzzle chances are we will never actually achieve anything. Here are four very intentional pieces to the success puzzle:

1)          Vision

In order to succeed, you need to start with knowing where you’re going and what you plan to achieve.  If you haven’t at least established the importance of this critical step, you are going nowhere fast… destined to another year of mediocrity.  Whether your vision is for a multinational organization or your personal career development, you absolutely must start with an intentional vision of your ultimate destination for this year.

Do you know what you want to accomplish this year? Do you know where you want your career or your business to be at the end of this year? Perhaps not.  Yet, despite this, you’re out there every day with no idea where you’re going or what you would like to achieve.  Until you know what you want to achieve for the year, until you can describe it with clarity, and know how you intend to get there… you are not thinking or acting with intentionality. As a result, you are unlikely to achieve what you are capable of this year.

2)          Skill development

There isn’t a professional athlete out there that doesn’t know their statistics. These stats make clear where their strengths and weaknesses are so they can train with purpose.  We all want to be known as great business professionals, yet most of us don’t have any indicators we follow to signify our continuous improvement as leaders.  As a result,  you likely have no idea what skills you should be developing in order to excel this year.  You progress through every business day, putting band-aids on broken legs and wondering why fire-fighting rules your day.  In order to overcome this phenomena, you need to have a plan for professional development and be committed to it – no matter what your level within the organization.

We all want to be best in class, until we actually have to do something intentional to get there.  Too many of us just fake it ‘til we make it – with this mentality we will never become all we can be.

 3)          Action

Vision without action is a waste of time. Many leaders claim they are “big picture” people, but the reality is that if we haven’t thought through the details of making our vision a reality, we are doomed to fail. You must establish actionable milestones along the way to facilitate your success.

What are the interim steps necessary to arrive at your ultimate destination for this year? How will you engage support? Who do you need to engage? How will you establish intentional actions to ensure your success?

 4)          Diligence

Diligence is a higher form of discipline.  Discipline is the short-term act of preparing for a marathon by following a training schedule.  Diligence is the act of running all your life to stay fit.  If you develop the art of diligence, as opposed to simple discipline, you’ll be much more likely to be successful over the long haul.

Discipline can get you to a short-term objective, but diligence will take you all the way to the end.  Diligence breeds quiet resolve toward long-term goals.  It is the will to succeed that manifests itself in single-minded pursuit of a goal – in short, intentionality.

Vision isn’t enough to get you where you want to go.  It’s a map.  You still have to get on the road and travel steadfastly toward your destination.

Having a plan to develop your skills isn’t of any value if you don’t have an intentional focus on what you want to achieve.

Action is not sufficient without a clear direction toward an ultimate destination, and…

Discipline and diligence aren’t enough.  Many people are committed to doing the same things every day and have know idea why… no idea where they are going.

The fact is, we all need vision, skill development, action and diligence in order to be intentional this year.  Put all four of these together and you will realize the Law of Intentionality – We know where we’re going, We know how we need to develop to get there, We know what we need to do to get there, and we move with intentional diligence to make it happen.

You’re much more likely to arrive at your ultimate destination this year if you put all four pieces of the puzzle of success together in a cohesive way.

How will you be intentional this year?

I would love for you to engage the discussion and let us know how you will intentionally focus on achieving your goals in the coming year. Please feel free to contact me at or by visiting our website at Check back next week for the next installment of Leadership Across Boundaries and Borders.


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Sheri is The Global Coach, founder of Luminosity Global Consulting Group, Global Executive Coach, Speaker, Writer and Global Business and Cultural Expert.

3 responses to Intentionality

  1. Hi Sheri,

    Thanks for the excellent reminder of what it takes to both envision and then create something life-changing and brilliant. Clear vision, clear strategy, relentless focus, relentless execution! And to manage (ie steer clear wherever possible) the everyday blizzard of emails, social media and phone calls.

  2. Hi Sheri, Really great, straight to the heart of the matter post. Particularly like your action questions, we do need to keep these front and centre on an everyday basis, what do i need to do now to move forward 😉

  3. AMEN! It takes a dream to have your passions fueled but a dream alone will not materialize without hard work. Diligence and persistence are what takes dreams out of the clouds and puts them here on the ground.

    “Commit your actions to the Lord, and your plans will succeed.” Proverbs 16:3

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