We’re getting toward the end of the year, and it’s that time when we’re looking back at everything we’ve done, the progress we’ve made, identifying what worked, what didn’t, and how we need to move forward. Maybe things didn’t go as planned. So, what do you do when you don’t hit your goals?
Whether you’re a new entrepreneur or a veteran, there are always going to be times when you don’t hit the goals you set for yourself. However, the way you respond to the setback of not hitting your goals is what creates real long-term success, so I’m discussing your options on today’s show.
Tune in this week to discover what to do when you don’t hit your goals. I’m sharing five simple strategies that you can use to recover when something doesn’t work out as you expected, and I’m walking you through how to implement these strategies when you start feeling like a failure.
The EntreMD Business School doors are finally open! If you’re ready to build a business that lets you live life and practice medicine on your own terms, click here to submit your application! And if you have questions, send us an email.
What You’ll Learn from this Episode:
- Why not hitting the goals you set yourself is inevitable as an entrepreneur.
- How too many entrepreneurs end up quitting as a response to not hitting their goals.
- 5 things you can do when you don’t hit your goals.
- The importance of making space for celebration, even when something didn’t quite work out.
- How to see the positives in your failures, discovering the parts that did work, and using them to move forward.
- What keeps me going when I don’t hit my goals, and how to connect with your own why as an entrepreneur.
Listen to the Full Episode:
Featured on the Show:
- I invite you to join my signature subscription program EntreMD On Demand, giving you access to a library of business courses designed to help you thrive as a physician entrepreneur!
- Email me
- YouTube Channel
- EntreMD Business School Testimonials
- The EntreMD Method: A Proven Roadmap for Doctors Who Want to Live Life and Practice Medicine on Their Terms by Nneka Unachukwu, MD.
Full Episode Transcript:
Hi docs, welcome to The EntreMD Podcast, where it’s all about helping amazing physicians just like you embrace entrepreneurship so you can have the freedom to live life and practice medicine on your terms. I’m your host, Dr. Una.
Well, hello, hello, my friends, welcome back to another episode of The EntreMD Podcast. As always super pumped that I get to be in your ears, and we’re going to have an amazing time. We are going to be talking about what to do when you don’t hit your goals, okay?
Now, at the time of this recording it is, you know, it’s October. And we’re getting towards the end of the year. It’s that time when people start, you know, maybe started taking a look what worked, what didn’t worked? Maybe for you, it’s different. Maybe you launched a private practice, or you launched a coaching program, you launched a course or something didn’t quite go the way you wanted it to go.
Maybe it’s not even a new thing, maybe you’re a veteran entrepreneur but you launched a new vertical, right, or a new business and not quite going the way you wanted it to go. You’ve set revenue goals and all of that, not playing out the way you expected it to.
This is the thing, as an entrepreneur, chances are really, really high that you are going to do things that don’t quite work out the way you want. And it’s not so much did it work out well or not, as it is how you respond to that.
Everybody’s going to have that moment where it didn’t work out, it completely flopped, you know, you were planning to do this thing, Facebook ad was your strategy, your account got locked up right before you’re supposed to go live. Like all kinds of crazy things happen when you’re an entrepreneur.
And so if you can wrap your head around the fact that setbacks and discouraging things, disappointments, all those things happen and they happen to everybody. And this is one of the reasons why if you are a veteran entrepreneur, you’re kind of like a unicorn because a lot of people will turn around and quit because it can be hard.
So it’s not whether you had a challenging time, or a goal you didn’t hit, or a failed launch, or any of those things. The question is, how do you respond to it? And how quickly do you recover from it? Okay, so we’re going to be talking about that.
Fun fact, at the time of this recording it’s 7pm, I was just like, you know, I thought about this, I want to record it. And I have Esther, who is my fourth baby here with me and being super nice and super quiet. So Esther is, you know, part of the inspiration for this, okay?
So when you’re done listening to this you can create a post and, you know, thank me for the episode and thank Esther for letting mommy record the episode. And she’s smiling and giggling.
Okay. All right, so here we go. What do you do? Okay, you set a goal for this year, it’s October and you know you’re not on track to hit it. Or you started something and it didn’t quite work out the way you wanted it to. What do you do? And I’m going to kind of walk you through five things that’s kind of my response.
And this is the thing, a lot of times you learn so much more from your mistakes and your failures than you learn from your success, right? Your success, you just take it, you celebrate it, you move on. And with this, if you develop that calmness to just say, “Okay, this did not go the way I wanted it to, let me debrief this, let me take a look at this, let me dissect this and let’s see how we can do it better.” Oh, my goodness, if you can adopt that, amazing.
Okay, so let’s look at five things, what to do when you don’t hit your goals. Number one, number one is to celebrate the progress, okay? Celebrate the progress. You may be like, “Dr. Una, I’m telling you, it didn’t work.’ But maybe it’s something you’ve tried for the first time. Maybe there’s a launch method you used that was a new thing. Maybe you’re just owning that you’re an entrepreneur. Maybe you’ve been a veteran entrepreneur, you stepped out of cruise control and you were like, “I’m going to go one step further.” There’s something you did, right?
Maybe even in that there were elements of marketing or selling that you did differently, right? Maybe for the first time you actually looked at your books, your profit and loss and all those things. In the process of doing this maybe you hired a team member, I don’t know. But in the failure, there was progress, right? And so what is that?
And this is one of the hardest muscles to develop, and it’s one of the muscles people despise the most, right? Like gratitude, what is that, right? Like celebrating, what is that? But this is what helps you keep going. This is what helps you realize that this is working. This is powerful, okay? So even in the midst of the failure, what is the progress, right?
The first thing, the starting point of all of this is celebrating that. This is what sets the tone for you to do the rest of the things we’re going to look at and enjoy it while you do it, okay? So what is the progress? What did I do differently? Where did I stretch myself? Where did I get out of my comfort zone? Okay?
Even you sitting down to say let me debrief this thing that didn’t work, as opposed to running away from it, that’s progress, okay? So celebrate it, document it, write it out, type it out. But celebrate the progress. Okay, so that’s number one.
Now, number two is you’re going to analyze that. What did work? Okay, what did work? So say you’ve been in private practice for three months and in three months you were like, “Oh my goodness, I am going to have, you know, 500 patients on my panel.”
Okay, but you have 45. Okay, so you don’t have 500, but you do have 45. How did they find you? What is it that you did that created that number of patients? That is something that worked, okay?
You did a launch and you were like, “This is going to be my first multiple six figure launch.” And you ended up at 180,000, okay? $20,000 short of your goal. Did you hit your goal? No, okay? But for you to have created $180,000, what did work?
What did work? How did those people find you? How was your presentation? What was your call to action that made them say yes? Was it the follow-up emails? Or did they do it right when you were doing a live webinar? Like what happened, right? What happened? What worked, okay?
Say you were starting a new vertical in your business and you were like, “Okay, I have a seven figure business, I’m starting this vertical. I wanted to multiple six figures.” It didn’t quite hit multiple six figures, but what did work, right? What did work?
Okay, you wanted to bring on a team member and you were like, “This quarter we’re going to bring on a new team member.” That could be somebody with marketing, that could be a director of ops, that could be a practice administrator. If you’re in private practice it could be a new doctor, it could be a new coach, whatever. And that hire didn’t work. What did work?
Do you finally at least have a really solid, sound job description that repels the people who shouldn’t work with you and attracts the A players? Have you at least streamlined your process of hiring and you have SOPs around that so even though this person didn’t work, you’re in a great position to hire the next person? Did you have to elevate your self-concept so much that you’re like, “I’m the kind of person who can hire this person.” Right?
So what did work? Because the principle is this, we do more of what works and less of what doesn’t, right? And so you celebrate, right? And then you identify what did work. What are the things that I did that created the results that I saw? Okay. All right. So that’s the second thing that you’re going to do.
And it’s so tempting to say there’s nothing to celebrate, there was no progress. And it’s so tempting to say, yeah, nothing worked. That’s why I’m here, that’s why I didn’t hit my goal. But it’s not true. It is not true, okay? So that’s the second thing.
The third thing is a come to Jesus thing, okay? It is where did I hold back? We have to learn to be brutally honest with ourselves. Where did you hold back? Where did we hold back? Is that, say, if you were doing a masterclass, or a webinar, or a live stream, did you hold back when it came time to make your offer, time for your call to action?
Like were you delivering great content until it got to that time to make the call to action you held back? Did you hold back in marketing your masterclass, or live stream, or webinar where you know you could have put in the effort, right? You knew that it would require a lot of volume.
It may have required some daily emails, daily social media, you know, reach out to people who’ve worked with you before. Like it required the volume and you did some, but you know you held back, right? You held back on the marketing. You held back on the call to action, right?
Could it be that when it was time for the team member that you were going to bring on board, did you hold back on selling them on the opportunity of working with you, right? Of making a strong call to action because people respond to that, right?
So where did you hold back? Where do you know, like I kind of gave, this was a half measure, you know, half the action, that’s what I did. And you want to be brutally honest with yourself. And so when it comes to the next time, you can go like, okay, we’re not doing that. I am leaving it all out there. I’m leaving it all out there, okay? So where did I hold back? Where did I hold back?
And then the fourth thing is, really I want you to think of this, before I tell you what it is I want you to think about it in basketball, okay? When it comes to basketball, one of the things that has really amazed me is how much they fight. But they fight in 24 second containers, right?
So there’s a play, you have 24 seconds. 24 seconds you have possession, right? And so your whole thing is in 24 seconds, I want to get this basketball into the basket, right? Like that’s my goal. And they’re running and they’re doing all the things, and they’re passing, and they’re defending and all of that.
And when they don’t score, the opposing team now has possession, right? But when they’re done and they get the ball back, they’re not necessarily referencing the last 24. Like it’s a new 24, it’s a brand new 24. It’s a brand new opportunity to get this ball into the basket, right?
And imagine if we didn’t spend like 10 24 second periods, containers mourning what didn’t go right. And we do a debrief, we analyze what works, we analyze what didn’t work, we analyze where we held back, and all of that and we go for a new 24, right?
And so the fourth thing, really, is to set a new 24. Okay, you didn’t hit it. Okay, great. So what are you going to do? Are you going to quit? Are you going to stop? Are you going to set smaller goals? Are you going to stop reaching high? Are you going to say, oh, this thing doesn’t work, forget it?
Or are you going to set a brand new 24? Give yourself a brand new slate and go like, we’re going to take this, we’re going to get this right, this is going to work. Because see, you can decide a turnaround as far as decisions go, right? Like, you may not be able to execute it right away because maybe you need to give it some time.
But you can decide in 24 hours, this date is my new 24 and I’m going to look at all the things that worked, and we’re going to do it even more. I’m going to look at things that didn’t work, we’re going to do that less or not at all. I’m going to look at where I held back and I’m going to hold myself accountable, I’m not doing that anymore. And we’re going for a new 24, right?
And so that’s number four, set a new 24. Don’t roll over, don’t play dead. Don’t like, we keep it moving. Why? Because the disappointments, the discouraging things, even places where we mess up, so the mistakes, those are all things that are part of the journey.
It doesn’t mean you’re a bad entrepreneur, it doesn’t mean you suck. It doesn’t mean any of those things, except you make it mean that. Except you make that story, right? Everybody has these things, okay? So you set a new 24 and you go for it.
And the fifth thing is, and I think this is one of the most powerful things, is you always want to stay connected to your why, right? Because I think the journey of entrepreneurship is a long journey. It doesn’t have a destination per se. You would have noticed this, especially if you’re a veteran entrepreneur, as you’re getting close to one goal, you dream up a new goal, right?
So it’s a it’s a long journey and it can be a hard journey. But it’s totally a doable journey, right? The more connected you are with your why, the easier it is to go through it, right? Sometimes people would ask me like, do you ever feel like quitting? And I’m like, you know, I guess it’s crossed my mind a few times maybe, right? But the thing that keeps me going and going and going is my why.
And what is my why? My why is that, you know, if I could put it out here like this, there is so much pain and suffering in the physician community. There are so many lies that we’ve been sold. And it’s almost as if there’s a lid that has been put on us.
You cannot be entrepreneurs. Even if you become an entrepreneur, you can’t be a real entrepreneur. You can’t share the stage with non-physician entrepreneurs because you’re not really an entrepreneur. Like you’re just trying, you just own a practice, or you’re just coach or something like that.
So we have that lid that’s been put there. And for me, I’m like we are literally one skill away, one skill away from being the leaders in healthcare inside and outside of the exam room. One skill away from sharing the stage with the most innovative entrepreneurs. One skill away from financial freedom. One skill away from falling in love with medicine again.
And I am so committed to help physicians, help physicians acquire this skill so they can then go on to live life and practice medicine on their terms. So yes, EntreMD is a business, but beyond that it’s a mission, right? And the more I connect with that, the more I’m like, I don’t know what happened over here with this thing that I did, but I’m going to figure it out because I have to pull this off.
I have to help 100,000 physicians. And why 100,000? Because it’s 10% of the physician population. I’m like, if I can touch 100,000 then the whole narrative changes. Like everything flips right side up, right?
And so the more you’re connected with your why, the more you fight, the more innovative you become, the more creative you become, the more resilient you are because you’re like, “I have to make this work. I have to make this work.”
Now, if you think about the things we talked about, celebrating your progress, look at what worked, look at where you held back, set a new 24, reconnect with your why. Those are the things that when things don’t go your way or you don’t hit goals and things like that, these are the things that are going to help you get back on track and get back on track quick, right, and turn that around and continue to progress along your journey, okay?
Now, I will put this out here. Entrepreneurship, again, can be long, it can be hard. The one thing it doesn’t need to be is it doesn’t need to be lonely. When I was starting off as an entrepreneur, I mean, I still, you guys have heard me talk about this.
You’ve heard me, you know, even write about in The EntreMD Method book, where I would be Googling physician entrepreneurs because I’m like, “Where are the fellow crazy people like me? People who dream up things and are trying to accomplish so much more than what we’ve accomplished with medicine and all of that.”
And I couldn’t find them. And part of why I couldn’t find them is I didn’t network, I didn’t build relationships. And the world was very different, there were no Facebook groups and I didn’t realize I had access to all these people. And it was not as cool, right? This was 2009, 2010, it just wasn’t as cool.
So but the thing is, the lonely part, you don’t have to do that. It is so beautiful to have a time where you didn’t accomplish goals and you can do that in community, right? You can recover in community where people can help you see the things that are there to celebrate. Where people can share with you, “Oh, that was me last week. And this is what is happening this week. Girl, don’t even worry about it.” Right?
To be in a position where you have access to strategy, not tactics now, right? Like not tasks and things like that, but strategy. Like how do I recover from this? How do I debrief this? What was the actual problem, right? Be in community where people are in momentum, so it’s easier to reset your 24.
And so that is why I’m so proud of what we’ve built, the EntreMD Business School. And I’ve been saying this for two years now, this is the number one business school for physicians who want to build six and seven figure and multiple seven figure businesses. This is the school for you. You get the coaching, you get the strategy, you get the accountability, you get the community, right?
And it’s built by a physician for physicians. It is proven, it has a track record. And if you’re here and you’ve been thinking about it, or you really love the podcast but you’re not taking action on what you’re learning, right, in the way that you could, you’re like one decision away from changing everything. You’re one decision away from launching the business, from scaling the business.
In the business school we have people from startups all the way to 7 million in revenue. And so there’s a place for you, right? There’s a place for you. And think about the strength of that room. There’s a space for you in the room, okay?
And so if you’ve been thinking about it, I just want to tell you it was built for you. And so go apply, go apply. You’ve tried to do it many ways, you haven’t done it yet. You’ve tried to grow it many ways, you haven’t grown it yet. Come join us, okay? So send an application, entremd.com/business. That’s entremd.com/business and we would love to have you in the school. Okay?
So any goal that you’ve been chasing down and you haven’t accomplished it, now is the time to apply these five things. Celebrate. What worked? Where did I hold back? Set a new 24. Reconnect with your why and go for it. Okay? There’s still time, you still have time on your side, you’re still here, that means you have another chance. And you can, okay?
So if you’ve been discouraged, I hope this encouraged you. I hope this set you on fire. And I would love nothing more than to hear all about it. You’re like, “Dr. Una, I quit on this because it was so hard and I failed here and I quit three months ago. And now it’s like, oh no, I’m getting back on it.”
And sometimes quitting doesn’t mean, quitting can be silent, right? Where you’re in cruise control in your business, right? You can be at seven figures and you quit. You’re like, “I don’t really care about this anymore. I don’t really want to do this.” But I hope you got a new fire back and you’re ready to go back and take the bull by the horn, okay?
As always, I’m rooting for you and I’m 1,000% committed to your success. So go for it and I cannot wait to celebrate your success with you, okay? Now, don’t forget to share this episode. Don’t forget to say thank you so much, Esther, for letting mommy spend her time talking to us, okay? And she’s looking at me, I would have to show her some posts, okay? So do it, tag me, #entremd and I’ll show it to Esther, okay?
All right, thank you for listening. I’ll see you on the next episode of The EntreMD Podcast.
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