Don?t Just Dream; Execute By Setting Goals

Lynnette Khalfani is the author of “The Money Coach’s Guide to Your First Million.”

Too many people dream of becoming a millionaire but have no real plan for how to achieve it. Well, you can?t become a millionaire just by dreaming, wanting, or wishing for wealth. As you develop the framework for your millionaire?s budget, think about planning for the future and reaching some of your bigger goals. So many times we get caught up in daily tasks and activities that we forget about setting substantive goals for the future. But in order to accrue substantial wealth, it?s essential that you write out your short-, medium-, and long-range goals. Some of you may not have thought about your own goals much lately. Perhaps your life has been consumed by your children?s world; their needs and wants always come first, and you constantly put your desires on the back burner. It?s a mistake to do that. Financially speaking, you can get yourself so wrapped up in another person?whether that individual is your child, partner, or parent?that you neglect yourself and fail to engage in smart, practical financial planning. You don?t want to look up 20 years from now and think that you should have managed your money better when you were younger.

To immediately improve how you handle your finances and make a giant leap toward becoming a millionaire, one of the most important things you can do is to write out your personal goals. This one act alone will help you build a foundation for a lifetime of wealth. If you are married or in a committed relationship, I suggest you do this exercise with your partner. Write your individual goals first, and then share your goals with the other person. Ultimately, we are all individuals with our own unique dreams and ambitions. Yet, for those of us involved with significant others, it?s crucial that you make a habit of setting? and reaching?your goals together.

I want you to think of your goals in the context of how long it will be before these goals can be realized. Short-term goals should be something that you can accomplish in a relatively brief period of time, say in one to two years, at most. Medium-term goals can be classified as those that require two to ten years to accomplish. Long-range goals are those that require ten years or more to fulfill. To jump start your thinking, I?ve included a laundry list of goals below. Some of these may be relevant to you; others may hold no significance. The idea, however, is to give yourself permission to focus on the things you want to accomplish in the future?goals you may never have acknowledged to yourself, let alone written down or verbalized to someone else. Among the goals you might pursue are:

? Eliminating credit card debt.

? Buying a new home.

? Saving for a college education.

? Investing for retirement.

? Starting a business.

? Establishing a cash cushion.

? Paying for a wedding.

? Saving for a new baby.

? Purchasing a vacation home.

? Traveling around the world.

? Buying a boat.

? Paying off student loans.

? Making a large contribution to church, synagogue, etc.

? Buying a new car or a second car.

One of the most important things you can do to reach your goal of becoming a millionaire is to write out your personal goals.

The Write Way

No matter what your goals, you should know that writing out your plans gives you a far better shot at making them happen. In fact, written goal-setting is a phenomenally powerful act as demonstrated by a number of high-profile cases.

A compelling example of the power of written goal-setting is represented in a 1979 survey of Harvard University students which found that 84 percent of them did not set goals. Another 13 percent of them did set goals, but didn?t bother to write them down. And only 3 percent of the graduating class had written goals and an action plan. Ten years later, researchers resurveyed the group. The 13 percent with unwritten goals were earning double the income of those with no goals. But here?s the whopper: the 3 percent of the student population with written goals earned 10 times as much as the other 97 percent!

Clearly, written goals are important. But do you realize how it is that written goals are able to propel you to reach success? Here are a few reasons why goal-setting works: |

? PURPOSE: Goals give your daily and long-term actions meaning and purpose. This helps you stay motivated when you realize that you?re engaging in certain financial behaviors for a reason and not just randomly acting.

? ACCOUNTABILITY: Goals also make you accountable. If you find that you?re regularly falling short of your goals, it could be that you?re not really committed to them.

? STRUCTURE: Goals provide a framework or structure from which you can operate and achieve your objectives. Many of us need this structure to plug away at reaching our goals, especially long range visions.

? DISCIPLINE: Goals spur you along to be consistent and disciplined in your actions since you know that a lack of discipline on your part will cause you to deviate from your plans, thereby jeopardizing your chances of hitting your goals.

? SPECIFICITY: Goal-setting forces you to not just think about what you want in general terms, but to write down your aims in concrete terms. Adding the element of specificity to your goals makes you far more effective in taking the practical steps required to reach your objectives.

Written goals give you purpose, make you accountable, make your financial plan concrete, supply you with a discipline to follow, and identify specific areas to focus on.

Setting Smart Goals

Your goals have to matter to you. They have to be achievable. You want to push yourself and stretch to achieve a goal without putting it so far out of reach that you become disillusioned and give up. Remember, failure is not an option for a Millionaire-in-Training. And I believe|

that?s what you are if you?re reading this book and taking this advice seriously. I?m also a believer in setting the appropriate type of goals. SMART is an acronym that describes goals that are:

Specific

Measurable

Action-oriented

Realistic

Time-bound

? Specific goals are the exact opposite of vague, hazy dreams. With the latter, someone might say, “I want to be rich,” or, “I want to save money for my kid?s college education.” Those are just general wishes, and chances are they won?t be fulfilled. But the person who sets a specific goal would define (in writing) exactly what “rich” means from his or her point of view, as in “I want to have a net worth of $5 million.” A specific goal regarding college savings might be: “I want to save $80,000 for my son?s college tuition.”

When you make goals measurable, you quantify the objective you?re seeking. In doing so, you ensure accountability and track your progress. For instance, to know where you?re going, you have to know your starting point. So if one of your goals is to have no debt, you need to know how much debt you currently have. If you add up your credit card bills and they total $20,000, then you make your goal measurable by writing down something to the effect that, “Over the next two years, I want to eliminate my $20,000 in debt.” In light of this goal, you know that after one year, if you?re staying on task, you should be able to measure your progress and find that you?ve knocked out half of your debt, or $10,000.

? Action-oriented goals require you to do something, not just think about doing something. Not weigh your options. Not analyze a certain situation. Not research possibilities, and so forth. No, in |order for the goal to carry weight, you must act upon it. So let?s say you initially thought that, “I want to start a business,” was a goal. That?s far too vague. You have to amend that statement and write something along the lines of: “By the end of the month, I want to create a business plan for my new interior design business.” This way, you know you actually have to draw up the business plan. If you look up sample business plans on the Internet or investigate what lenders want in a business plan, that?s fine as a prerequisite to what you have to do. But ultimately, it?s the actual writing of your business plan that you need to accomplish.

? Realistic goals are neither too ambitious nor too easy to accomplish. If you set the bar so high that it?s impossible to reach your goal, you?re only setting yourself up for failure and disappointment. By all means, make your goals challenging to reach, but be realistic in your expectations. Here?s a case in point. Let?s say one of your goals is to return to college and obtain an MBA. You already have a Bachelor of Arts degree, and you know that the MBA program you want to attend typically takes two years for the average fulltime student to complete. If you work 40 hours a week, will take courses only part time, and can study only on the weekends, don?t expect to finish the MBA program in 18 months. Given the confines of your situation, a more realistic yet still challenging goal might be: “I want to earn my MBA in two and a half years.”

Any worthwhile goal is time-bound and includes a deadline by which the goal should be met. When you include a deadline, you make your goal time-bound. Therefore, it?s not good enough to say: “I plan to buy a new home.” Instead, when writing out your SMART goal, put down something like: “Two years from now, I plan to put down a 10 percent down payment toward the purchase a $450,000 Tudor home with four bedrooms and two bathrooms.” This goal is clearly specific, measurable, action-oriented, realistic for many people, and time-bound.

From The Money Coach’s Guide to Your First Million by Lynnette Khalfani; Published by McGraw Hill April 2006; ISBN: 0071470816 copyright 2006

The Role of Requirements Management for an Integrated ALM Platform

Vital information about the customers’ requirements helps you in conceptualizing, planning and designing an application that meets all the demands. How do you define and evaluate the requirements of your customers? You can find potential information through emails, the inputs procured through their website visits or by importing the documents related to the customers. You need an extremely qualified tool that can provide you with every customer input that can help in improving the quality of your products and leverage customer satisfaction with the intention to boost your sales strategies.

The development of applications and maintenance of its life cycle is a critical process that has to be handled with caution. There is no scope for making mistakes and losing lucrative opportunities. Thus the requirements management process initiates an ambitious mission with aspirations for achieving complete success. The tools deployed in the requirements management process should provide support over the web to enhance collaboration amongst the distributed teams so that the operation is a unified one with effective management capabilities and better control over the project.

The requirements management tools need to facilitate the use of rich text editor for opening a Microsoft word document or enabling a portion of the formatted text to be copied and pasted onto the rich text editor. They have to provide facilities for submittals through your official website or portal or by sending emails. They should help in the importing from Microsoft Word documents and excel sheets. They should provide the feasibility to import from a CSV file with configurable formats. They should provide assistance in integration with third party tools and real-time synchronization.

The requirements management tools should provide comprehensive traceability capabilities for an analysis of both proactive and reactive impacts. These tools need to be reusable so that quality is improved and the time required for the development of the application life cycle management solution is considerably reduced. The tools should possess the qualities to review, approve, implement and test changes without affecting the costs adversely and keeping within the deadline limits.

The tools should be intelligent to determine the important requirements from the mass acquired from various sources for implementing important ALM development decisions. The generation of reports regarding marketing requirements, system requirements, product road maps, test compliance and trend charts are equally important that help in development of a desirable and customized product. The requirements management tools should deliver high QC integration capabilities for conducting tests, identifying defects effectively and verifying them with further tests so that guaranteed and quality products are released in the market.

How Can Shelving Systems Aid With Neatness

There are countless different types of shelves out at hand that you can buy for your residence to improve the sum of organization it has. Many people don’t in actuality recognize how many different types of benefits there is from gettting shelves for their house, not only that but they don’t recognize how many different types of shelves there are that you can obtain and apply to boost the elegance of the home, and how well organized and clean it is. To start off you may possibly need to do some research and discover out where the top shelves are sold and how you can get them for a lower price. After that you will need to do some in home measurements and observe if your home can fit any kind of shelves or something that has to be more exact.

Before we being we require to figure out the amountt of different types of shelves that you can fit into your home, you may want to buy some for your garage, storage area, living room, or your own room to help it out with organization. There are also many different types of shelves you can get that are made of completely different materials, for example you can get metal, wood, plasitc and chrome {for example that you can find in stores for sales|for instance, these you can find in many different stores for sale on all kinds of prices.. If you are looking to increase your organization you will need to start thinking more deeper|If you are really serious about increasing the amount of organization and cleanliness your home or office has you will need to think more deeper{}. Into aspects such as the weight of the objects that you will be placing on it|This can be for instance into aspects such as weight since this will determine how durable the shelf needs to be}, also the size of the objects another important aspect, and finally the type of shapes the objects you will place on it is also very important. There tons of different shelves out there in stores that you will need to know, you can’t simply go buy any type out there for sale, you need to make sure that it will fit and it goes well with your room..

Next you will need to take good measurements of your surroundings and spot what variety of shelves can fit into that precise region. If you are looking for something more with design next this won’t matter as a good deal, there are numerous custome places you can purchase shelves. Regularly wood is the top selection for this, you can acquire it from wood workers for a higher cost. But you will be getting the most custom and best shelves available. If you are looking for something more of a storage area you can look at warehouses and see if they are selling bulk there. Well that isn’t about it for this, take your time doing all the right research and you will unquestionably finish up with the finest shelving system for your residence.

EU Announces Boost in Budget For Hi Tech Industry & Research

In a very unexpected move, the EU announced recently that it will be putting significantly more money towards “scientific research and innovation” in next year’s budget. According to the European Commission, next year’s budget will include at least 6.4 billion euros for such innovation. This is an increase of more than 12 percent over last year’s budget, in a year that saw no inflation.

The money is expected to be put towards a number of projects that are gaining importance in view of the European population. It will be distributed between more than 16,000 organisations and businesses. Some of the more practical problems that it will be used to challenge include an aging population, climate change, energy, health, and food security and shortages. Most of these are projects that will see immediate benefits and have definite practical applications.

The EU says that it is making this move in part to increase jobs. With record unemployment levels, the EU expects that this project will create more than 165,000 jobs. Most of these jobs are expected to be long-term considering that many will be in universities and the public sector, where employees can get tenure and enjoy greater job security.

The EU is also putting a large amount of this money towards more theoretical and less practical aims. For example, fusion, a theoretical way of creating practically limitless energy, has long been a project that most large countries in the world have worked on. The EU currently is building the Iter Fusion reactor, which has a 1.4 billion euro shortfall. Some of this money will be used to finance that project. Among other theoretical projects are 270 million euros for nanotechnology, 600 million euros for advanced computer technology, and 400 million euros for carbon-emission computer monitoring programs. While these projects may not have immediate applications, most are projects that many governments are investigating and a large advantage can come of improvements in these areas.

This money is expected to significantly increase the impact of the EU governments in the scientific community. Not a single major public scientific program is going to have money cut from its budget, and many will have increases in their budgets. While governments currently account for only five percent of scientific research in the EU, that number is expected to dramatically increase next year, especially in light of companies pulling back in the poor economy. According to the European Commission, this number is going to increase even farther in 2013.