TO GOAL OR GROW? That is the question!

This is so counterintuitive that I don’t beat myself too much for almost completely missing it earlier in my life. I’m glad I have clinched that now: to grow an enterprise, grow people; to hit your goals focus on growing yourself and on the growth process.


The sure way: grow yourself to your goal.



Like most people I know, I love the word potential. Potential is the difference between who/where you are now and who/where you could be. Success, then, would be getting to who/where you could be.  Being a go(al)-getter, one of the biggest mistakes I’ve made in life has been to keep the target or goal so much in mind and trying to figure out various strategies and timelines to hit it but neglecting the most important thing and most important one: growth and me. John Maxwell puts it succinctly: “To reach your potential you must grow. And to grow, you must be highly intentional about it.”

No matter the systems and structures, tools and technologies, courses and cash one gathers to hit a goal, unless there is investment in the growth of the person(s) involved, the goal is unlikely to happen. To achieve a goal, invest in growth of those the fulfillment of the goal depends on. To grow an enterprise, grow people.

Try something else in the new year: keep the goal in mind but focus on you (or whoever it depends on) and focus on a growth process. Let’s see what happens. I take my mentor John’s counsel seriously: “If you focus on goals, you may hit the goals, but that doesn’t guarantee growth. If you focus on growth, you will grow and always hit growth.” This is how to win, 100% of the time!

Here’s a paragraph from John’s 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth, which at the start of the new year I take a selected few through, that makes the point:

“If you want to discover your purpose, you need to grow in self-awareness. To become a better human being, you need to grow in character. To advance in your career, you need to grow in your skills. To be a better spouse or parent, you need to grow in relationships. To reach your financial goals, you need to grow in your knowledge about how money works. To enrich your soul, you need to grow spiritually.”

In similar fashion, as James Allen wrote in his classic As a Man Thinketh, “People are anxious to improve their circumstances but are unwilling to improve themselves; they therefore remain bound.”  Get it? To get your goal you’ve got to grow.

To change stuff, change you; to grow stuff, grow you.



Now, assuming you’ve agreed with me that you’ve got to grow to succeed, then the next logical question (in all probability) is how do I grow?.  Well, you need to know the principles (laws) governing growth and have a plan and process to grow.  Key to this plan and process is, again, people.

They say “we become the combined average of the five people we hang around the most.” Take a quick inventory right now. Depending on who your average five turn out to be, you must be pretty excited or pretty disappointed right now.

Apart from becoming a growing person yourself (towards your goals), you also need growth people, to stimulate, guide and guard your growth. This may be in the form of an accountability friend, a supportive spouse, an executive coach, or a small group like a mastermind.

I like to say that where two or three come together ‘magic’ happens. It is true. No matter how brilliant the ideas I think I have are, somehow when I meet with a group of people to discuss it the final outcome is much much better than my best ideas. It goes without saying that all of us are better than any one of us, any day! That is what Napoleon Hill discovered (mentioned in his 1925 book) and called a” mastermind”–when two people come together they create a third, invisible mind which is greater than the sum of the other two.

So for ideation, encouragement and accountability, everyone needs someone to come alongside them in their growth journey towards goal-getting.



To goal or to grow? That is the question. This is so counterintuitive that I don’t beat myself too much for almost completely missing it earlier in my life. I’m glad I have clinched that now: to hit your goals focus on growing yourself and on the growth process. Even if you don’t hit your goal, you will hit your growth.

Be goal-bound (as in, headed towards your goal) not situation-bound (as in, stuck where you are) by being growth-bound (heading towards growth and sticking to growth). Set your goal alright but then focus on the growth it will take. To hit goals, focus on the person(s) involved and on the growth process. To get your goal you’ve got to grow. This is how to win 100% of the time!


Post Script

If you want to see if there’s still room for you in the 2020 Growth Mastermind click here.

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  1. Kwame Dei says:
    31 December 2020

    My focus on growth has been that of my team. I must admit it’s frustrating at times. A shift in focus on my own growth has implications for their grow.

    • Yaw Perbi says:
      31 December 2020

      Thanks for your thoughtful response.
      What makes this focus on growth frustrating at times for you, please?

      • Kwame Dei says:
        2 January 2021

        I feel I am doing my best to support them grow; yet there is either little or no improvement.

  2. Kwame Dei says:
    31 December 2020

    The 2020 Growth Mastermind click here link does not work


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