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Ever heard of a BHAG?

A BHAG (bee-hag) or rather, a Big Hairy Audacious Goal is a term authors James Collins and Jerry Porras coined in their book “Built to Last: Successful Habits of Visionary Companies”, that describes a medium to long term goal that is bold or risky, highly questionable, but not impossible.

What is a goal in your business or company that is SO big, it feels like you’re moving a mountain?

For starters, a BHAG is not a trending goal. To say that your business will grow by 8% this year and historically it’s been trending 7-8%% every year. That’s historical data that you’ll (most likely) hit again, as you had every year prior.
Instead, you may want to tap into a new market, one you’ve never treaded water in, or develop a never seen before product. GULP!! But you can’t deny the possibilities once you’ve completed your homework: strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats (SWOT Analysis) – yeah, I’d say that’s a BHAG!

Someone just recently had asked me, “Should a BHAG ever be obtainable?”

My first answer was naturally “Yes”! But then I thought about it for a couple minutes. Was your BHAG ever really a big hairy audacious goal then?
The goal should be SO big that you would have to move mountains to achieve it. And that “mountain” has a different meaning for each individual or company. Well that’s crazy huh? Not really, why give yourself a mediocre goal? Why not push yourself, your team members, and your business? Why not feed the drive and watch what could happen?

What is your BHAG? Your Big Hairy Audacious Goal

  • Write it down! (remember, a goal without a plan is just a dream)
  • Set a deadline. (this also differs for each individual or company)
  • What are the strategies that you must put in place to get you closer to your BHAG?
  • What are the tactics you will need align to accompany those strategies?
  • What is the one thing you can add to tweak your BHAG to make your BHAG move mountains?
  • Hang it up on your wall or tack-board to remind yourself and your team members of your BHAG! Remember, outta sight – outta mind.

Take these steps to put your BHAG into motion. Push yourself! Push your team members! Tell your spouse or friend so that someone can hold you accountable. Don’t settle for mediocrity and know that you can do this!

And for the people brave enough to spill it, do you have a BHAG? If so, would you tell me?