Modern Selling: How to Achieve your 2023 Goals

Jan. 12, 2023
A six-part plan to roadmap a successful year

This article originally appeared in the January 2023 issue of Security Business magazine. When sharing, don’t forget to mention Security Business magazine on LinkedIn and @SecBusinessMag on Twitter.

You are likely reading this column in the middle of January, right about the time that you are realizing that those 2023 goals you set before the holidays might have been too ambitious. While I agree that most December expectations are unrealistic, I believe the primary reason that most goals are unachievable is not because of unreasonably high hopes, but because of a lack of planning.

To achieve your goals – especially sales goals – you need a plan. Here are six pieces of a plan that will help you achieve your 2023 goals.

1. Write the goals.

Once something is written, then there is an emotional contract between you and your future self. For some reason that I do not quite understand, humans take this contract seriously. Write down your goals and post them. I type mine in a Word document so I can view them frequently from my phone or computer.

2. Break down annual goals into quarters.

For each annual goal, back into quarterly goals and make sure they are logically determined. Unless there is some crazy course of events, I cannot imagine that any of your achievements will be distributed equally across each quarter, so don’t do the 25% across the calendar. Think about seasonality and activity for each time of year. Consider your vacations and your customers’ timelines. This exercise will enable you to examine your progress every quarter and make the appropriate adjustments.

3. Define best practices of living and working that will help you achieve your goals.

This idea is often overlooked. We write down a list of goals, but we do not establish the best practices of living and working to achieve those goals. These best practices have become my favorite part of pursuing goals because it defines a stimulating and healthy way of living. For example, if one of your goals is to become more technically competent in access control, then a best practice could be to conduct four hours per month of education on access control.

4. Establish your Ideal Week.

Following a routine is the most effective way to realize goals. Unfortunately, it can be very difficult to follow a routine when we are constantly being dragged in multiple directions. To counter this problem, design an ideal week into your calendar. What does your perfect week look like? Document it and do your best to follow it. For the record, you will never be able to follow it because the unexpected tends to happen; however, designing and documenting your ideal week will help you stay focused and get the important things done – not just the urgent things.

5. Conduct monthly status checks.

On the same day and time every month (e.g. the third Tuesday at 8 a.m.), seclude yourself and review your progress on each goal. It is possible that you are significantly ahead or behind on one or more goals. If so, do not give way to the temptation to modify your annual goals. If you are significantly ahead, celebrate; if behind, learn. Don’t move the goalposts or your future self won’t trust you. If the annual goal seems meaningless because you are so far ahead or behind, then use your quarterly breakdowns to stay motivated.

6. Recruit an accountability partner.

No matter how disciplined you are, you will be better with an accountability partner. Find one. Share your goals with them and meet monthly to discuss progress and ways to improve. It is amazing how creative someone can be that has a different perspective.

Chris Peterson is the founder and president of Vector Firm (, a sales consulting and training company built specifically for the security industry. Use "Security Business" as a coupon code to receive a 10% lifetime discount at To request more info about the company, visit