Two Important Questions


These are the two most important questions you need to ask in most cases:

  1. Is this thing/situation/person/work the way you want this to be?
  2. If not, what are you doing about it?

If you keep asking yourself these two questions and keep answering them to the best of your abilities, you’ll keep improving your life and everyone will love you for it.

Designing Goals


Be it individual, or corporate or even government run organization, they all need goals. Most of us grow up listening to people about how important it is to have goals, and all the nice things about keeping performance in check through goals. So all that while most of the information that we receive about goal setting is reinforcing the same basic issues.

What we come to learn at a management school is something that is very much applicable in effective goal design and setting. Goals should be S M A R T. The acronym stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Time-bound.

If smart goal designs are understood and implemented, this could lead to a huge degree of change in the results.

Specific means you provide a quantifiable figure to your goal. For instance, increasing profitability by 10% for instance, rather than targeting higher profits.

Measurable means that you keep checking in to your target and current state and gauge the difference to note your progress. One, it motivates you toward achieving your goal and Two, it acts as a warning sign if you are going off.

Attainable is a bit tricky, however, to put simply, goals should be achievable given the resources that you have in terms of time, effort, finances, energy, skillset, etc. Here, also important is the open acceptance of goals, not imposed acceptance.

Realistic is to say that these should neither be too easy nor be very difficult, as in both the cases most people will lose their drive and stop working hard enough.

Time-bound is an important fifth pillar of SMART goals. All goals should be linked to a time component to see if work targets have been met in time.

On the finishing note, in order to increase goal effectiveness, make sure you write down your SMART goals. Once you have it written, it comes as a reaffirmation of your conviction in the goals and would increase the chances of success of your planning endeavor.

Floods in Pakistan: Worst ever in the History of the Nation


There are instances when one feels quite helpless at the state of affairs and wonders how could he make any positive difference. Indeed, the recent floods in Pakistan is one such occasion when many Pakistanis are feeling this way. Around 20 million people are estimated to be affected by the floods directly and innumerable societal affects on a broader scale. It is a natural disaster of such a huge scale that government, military, NGOs and civil society are working together toward saving people and helping survivors still feeling quite helpless.

Some major issues that have sprung up in light of the floods and extended damage everywhere are:

  • Rescue of living people in flooded areas
  • Availability of food
  • Access to medicines, health facilities and psychological support
  • Access to clean water
  • Provision of shelter to the affectees

All these issues seek an immediate attention. It is clear that resource scarcity, ineffective resource mobilization and difficulty in doing rescue operations due to geographic difficulties are significant hurdles in the near-term.

On the longer-term, issues of higher importance remain to be resolved. Some of those issues are:

  • Channeling the floodwater out to sea and repairing/developing dams, barrages and water channels throughout the country
  • Rehabilitation of affectees back into their own areas
  • Provision of alternative homes to the affectees
  • Employment generation across all over Pakistan, especially in flood-affected areas
  • Preparing land ruined by floods for use in agriculture, again
  • Arranging for food security of the country by managing the food reserves (of wheat, rice, grains, etc.)
  • Re-establishing the social protection measures and infrastructure (schools, colleges, hospitals, clinics, roads, parks, etc.)
  • Finding hope and setting direction for the broken families, destitute adults, orphans and providing them psychological rehabilitation and some activity to keep themselves productively occupied

It indeed is a big loss and it cannot be corrected in one day, one week, one month or even one year. The short- and long-term goals for putting things back on track and bringing the house in order would need huge amounts of dedication, efforts, mutual support and commitment to a unified goal – of progressing together and reviving again. More than monetary aid, these are issues that need human care and support.

Pakistanis are a resilient nation. They have been through worst of conditions. As long as they stand united, I am sure the revival will come through. All that is needed is a firm faith in Almighty, coherent policies at the governmental level, support from all segments of the society and most importantly BELIEF in oneself and each other.