Disruptive. Innovative. Groundbreaking. Ninjas. Unicorns. Magic.
These are common words in the tech world. Everyone wants to be big, impactful, and untouchable. It's like winning the lottery or becoming famous.
It's great to have stretch goals or aspirations that seem impossible. They spur creative and abstract thought so amazing things happen once in a while. One thing I wanted to highlight, however, is that small, meaningful things get overshadowed by these goals. While they aren't groundbreaking, they do hold a ton of value and they're easier to accomplish. They can also have a ripple effect. Here is an example of what I'm talking about:
Big Goal: Carl is a Stanford MBA grad. He wants to be a CEO so he can make a product that completely disrupts the healthcare market. He wants to go IPO and live next to Mark Zuckerberg.
Impact: World domination.
Little Goal: Carl is a Stanford MBA grad. He got an internship at Google. He sees that there's recurring miscommunication between his boss and one of his direct reports. He sees why they're on different pages and wants to find a process that will help them understand each others' perspective so his team's work will be more streamlined.
Impact: Happier boss, direct report, and team. Better product.
Making big waves is honorable and rare. Making little waves is honorable and attainable. Make sure to incorporate them into your plan as you reach for the moon.