At the beginning of the year, I sat down for an interview on goal setting with Brandon Lewis, Founder and Mentor-in-Chief at The Academy for Professional Painting Contractors and publisher of Painters Weekly, a magazine for painting contractors.


Dust off your New Year’s resolutions…how are you doing? Have you reached your goals? Or, are you struggling in this department?


Brandon says,  “When it comes to marketing a painting business, a lack of goal setting and follow through can kill an owner’s chance at success – even if that owner has all of the tools and strategies they need to succeed.”


The same truth applies to you.


The secret to forward momentum is implementation, and that’s exactly why Brandon asked me to shed some light on the subject…



In this 50-minute interview with Brandon Lewis, Dr. Gratias answers the following questions:


  1. We’re only one month into the New Year, so many owners are still in the planning stages. What advice do you have when it comes to goal setting and getting clear on what you want to accomplish over the next 12 months or so?
  1. What do you find, most often, derails people in the long-term planning process? Why are the biggest obstacles to putting down – in writing – a clear pathway to achievement?
  1. Alright, so now we have our annual objectives in writing. Let’s talk about implementation. This where so many plans go awry. How do we get from the 50,000 foot view of our businesses – and our personal lives – down to the next action steps where the rubber meets the road?
  1. We all have high-priority lists we’ve written down that are attached to our most important goals, but so often, we seem to get bogged down in low-priority, energy-draining tasks. How can people identify what’s dragging them away from achieving meaningful results?
  1. If you had to identify the top three, habitual activities that small business owners engage in that kills their productivity, what would you say they were?
  1. I’ve always found it important to have frameworks for determining what projects need to be done to reach a goal, how to organize them, and how to get them implemented on a more gradual level. What are a few of your favorites?
  1. I find that a lot of small business owners, and our APPC members in particular, suffer from undue anxiety. I’ve struggled with this for years. From an organizational standpoint, what do you feel causes this sense of angst?
  1. What are some anxiety-busting measures you’d recommend?
  1. Habits and routines are important. When it comes to planning and organizing, what should business owners be doing on a weekly basis to make sure that they are staying on track?
  1. If you could think of a few sentences or one quote that summarizes your philosophy on organization and productivity the best, what would it be?
  1. Melissa, you’ve been so very, very kind with your time. Tell folks how they can find some of your resources or reach out to you?
  1. If you had any last thoughts to share with our owners while they still have a quiet period – before the oncoming spring repaint rush kicks into high gear – what would they be?


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Dr. Melissa Gratias, MBG Organizing SolutionsDr. Melissa Gratias (pronounced "Gracious") is a work psychologist who helps overwhelmed and underappreciated businesspeople be more focused and effective. Since 2007, thousands of people have graduated with honors from her onsite sessions, distance coaching, productivity seminars, and corporate consulting projects. Based in Savannah, Georgia, Melissa is available for nationwide consulting and speaking engagements. Contact her via email at or call 912-417-2505. Sign up for her free monthly e-newsletter or visit her website,

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