Are you getting a tax refund? Are you having to send the IRS more money? What happened to make either of these scenarios come true for you? Tax planners, which we most certainly are not, tell us that failure to plan accurately leads to over- or under-payment of your tax obligations.
Over-paying means loaning the government money at 0% interest. For more than a couple hundred dollars that’s something you probably don’t want to do. And under-paying by more than a couple hundred dollars probably hurts more than you’d like.
The better habit is to plan out your withdrawal amounts to tune your withholding, we’re told.
Would it surprise you to know that goal achievement follows the same formula? Plan to do too much in a quarter and you lose focus, wavering between this and that and any other objective that seems critical. Plan to do too little and you’re not likely to accomplish as much as you need to or could have.
So how do you get better at planning the work for a quarter? Employ a system that encourages you to track progress. Read that last sentence again: It’s not focused on the planning, nor on the reviewing. The focus is simply all about making it fun to record your progress. Fun like you feel when you realize you’re getting a tax refund.
The magic behind MyObjectives
You’ll find that your inner drive will cause you to review your progress, and that will lead to planning better at the start of the next quarter. It’s not magic, not by any means (see last week’s blog for the good news about discipline). But the key really is that the process of recording progress be fun and rewarding: That’s the magic behind how MyObjectives helps companies every day make progress on the goals their leadership has set forth.
In a selfish, twisted sort of way, we take joy in getting our withholding just right, so the IRS gets only the amount they are due. In a more rewarding way, realizing at the end of a quarter that you planned and executed your work just perfectly is more lasting than how quickly you’ll spend your tax refund.