When it comes to success, there’s lots of talk about mission statements, vision statements, goals and objectives — and for good reason. These tools can be incredibly helpful to define the what and the why of success. A great mission statement helps people understand the underlying reason why the team or organization exists. A good vision statement defines a preferred future that inspires individuals, teams and organizations to see what the future could or should look like. A solid set of goals provides more tangible, shorter-term targets.

Mission, vision, goals and objectives. Great tools to help you achieve success. Invaluable, really…but incomplete. Because while mission statements define purpose, they won’t help you get there. Vision is critical but without a plan of attack, without action, a vision is simply a dream or a mirage — something that could be…but won’t be.

Strategy and discipline are what sit in the gap of what could be and what will be. While mission and vision define the what and why, strategy answers the critical question, how? How do we achieve the mission? How do we accomplish the goals? How do we move forward? Discipline is the ability to keep going when you’d rather stop.

And that is precisely where projects fit in.

A project is something that you plan and do, usually in a series of steps, to achieve a specific objective or outcome within a specific timeframe.

project defines how to get stuff done: what to do, when to do it and who will do it. A well-defined project also provides an excellent discipline structure to achieve short-term goals that align back to mission and vision before motivation wanes.

I believe that executing projects is one of the best ways to get things done and, ultimately, getting things done is what drives success. Want to be successful? Start getting more things done. Want to get more things done? Start defining and executing projects! Want to learn how to define and execute projects more effectively? Well, you’ve come to the right place!