A Horse With No Legs

Great goals are great beginnings but goals alone never reach great endings.

“Move beyond goals; focus on specific tasks.”
Dean Brenner in “Share the Sandbox

A goal without action items is a horse with no legs; it looks good from a distance but it never takes you anywhere. Tasks are points of execution.


Teams get stuck on can’t do’s. Every team has a, “We can’t do that because…” conversation. Obstacles and challenges become excuses not to execute. Never let what you can’t do prevent you from doing what you can.

Execution in an imperfect world:

There are always good reasons not to pursue great goals. One category of reasons not to move forward is labeled “things we can’t control.” Brenner suggests two responses to the uncontrollable:

  • Accept. Stop obsessing.
  • Adapt. When the wind blows against you, adjust the sails.

“Control the controllable first.” Dean Brenner

When your team gets stuck on what can’t be done ask, “What can we do?” Create simple points  of execution. Give legs to the horse, if not, you’re glued where you are.

How do you work through obstacles to find execution points?

How do you design effective execution points?