The HOT Plan™: Targeting Success


It happened again just the other day. “So, what do you do at Pitsco?” a new acquaintance asked me at a networking event.

He was just making small talk, but there I was again, facing my eternal conundrum. These types of questions always leave me wondering what to say. Pitsco’s operations are anything but small. In fact, if you come and visit us you will step into a whirlwind of activity, with countless things going on that we could talk about for hours.

So what could I say in 50 words or less? I fell back on statistics and vision. “Our vision is leading education that positively affects learners,” I answered. “We served three million kids and teachers last year, shipped products to 43 countries and to all 50 United States.”

His eyes grew bigger. Suddenly, he wanted more than small talk. “How does a medium size business do all that?” he asked. “How can you possibly get all of that done?” I couldn’t help but smile.

Now we had something to talk about: how to target success; one of my favorite subjects.

“We use HOT Targets,” I said. “HOT Targets are our secret. It’s HOT Targets that empower our teams to remarkable achievement levels.”

What are HOT Targets? They’re the vehicle our teams use to drive the company forward. Targets are bite-size, do-able steps, written by the teams themselves, that describe how the team plans to accomplish their portion of key company initiatives.

HOT Targets solve two problems at once. First, they invite input from employees about how they want to best accomplish their work. As the millennials become the majority in the workplace, the demand for this type of input is fast increasing. Second, Targets help teams break complex tasks into doable steps, and reward the teams when they hit the bulls-eye.

HOT Targets have many elements of smart goals, but the opportunity to be rewarded introduces an element of gamification that motivates any workplace or organization to hit the mark. HOT Targets are also proven to help produce great workplace culture.

At first, writing HOT targets may sound easy, but it took us years to get it right. In the next few weeks, I want share those lessons with you.

For more about writing HOT Targets and how make them work for your workplace, check out my new book, The HOT Plan™, that is available on Amazon in eBook or print versions. For special bulk pricing (10 or more books), please visit Visit for more details about The HOT Plan™.

Re-posted from March 29, 2016.




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