New Year Resolutions are often expected to be broken and broken they are!
I have not done an empirical study of this phenomenon but anecdotal data suggests that losing weight is one resolution which millions must be making only to break it. And for this people often blame it on themselves and their willpower.
Having worked with people on performance management I only know that the mistake lies in the quality of the goal setting people do for themselves.
Let me illustrate.
You are a Sales Manager and you manage a fleet of feet on the street to sell carpets in rich neighborhoods. You have to set targets for your new sales staff. You’ve had a history of enthusiastic sales people joining and then leaving in a month on not meeting their numbers. Which of these two ‘goals’ would you think would get you your numbers.
(a) selling carpets worth ‘x’ lakhs a month
(b) Knocking ‘y’ number of doors to make a sale everyday
With (a) as a goal chances are he would try hard and give up a few weeks/months later. With (b) as a goal he would keep gaining experience on what works / not works and just might meet the target