In the corporate world, CIO stands for Chief Information Officer. It’s a job title commonly given to the information technology and computer systems executive.

Let’s shift it just a bit and become CIO’s in our lives. This time, CIO stands for Chief Implementation Officer.

Part of my work time goes toward helping elite entrepreneurs reach their personal and professional goals. Sometimes that means I become the CIO of their company. It’s much more than being a consultant.

Whatever your goal or focus may be, you are responsible for the result.

A consultant or an advisor locates the issues and provides the prescription. The company must carry it out to achieve the result. A Chief Implementation Officer pinpoints the problems and carries out the effort necessary to attain the goal.

Here’s a quick example:

A client wants a Facebook ad to lead to an opt-in form and then a one-time offer. There are a lot of people who could advise on that and a lot of people who could do that task. But there aren’t a lot of people who can combine both so that the company’s brand and desired result stay true throughout the process. Being able to know the company and the market place—and the marketing mechanics required to connect the two—requires implementation.

You need to be the consultant and implementer of your dreams. Whatever your goal or focus may be, you are responsible for the result. You must target the problem, create the solutions and take the action. Here’s how to become your own CIO…

1. Information

Is there an education deficit between where you are and where you want to be? A few years ago I decided to run a half-marathon (Only out of pride because a friend was getting in shape and I was rotund!) Guess how much I had run before that? I’d put it in the category of “not much.”

In June, I ran six miles. Cumulative. It took all of June to get those in. In July, I went crazy. Nine miles. Then I realized I needed a plan, so I typed “half-marathon” into Google and out popped an ideal running plan for pudgy Paul.

We live in an incredible age where almost any knowledge or instruction needed can be accessed with a few keystrokes. Whatever your goal or dream, there is a book, course, video, article or audio to help you learn and understand all you need to know to reach it.

2. Installation

Obviously, it is not enough to simply possess the knowledge. The next step in my half-marathon challenge of doom required that the plan be formatted to match my abilities. You see, I downloaded a guide that was created for super humans. After taking a quick glance at the schedule, workouts, cross training and eating plan, there was little doubt that to pursue said program “as is” would mean certain death. The goal was to finish, not win. (And since my body had been spared such an endeavor for 44 years, I would set a personal best in the “race” regardless!)

First, I crossed off the cross training and diets. That left the workouts, most of which included mileage such as six miles. Others included sprints such as “quarter milers x eight.” I crossed those off too. The only thing left on the sheet was the running. Period. Now there existed a system I could follow.

To become your own CIO, you need to tailor the knowledge you receive for you. The plan you bought or looked up was designed based on the ability, skills, wiring, intellect, trial and error, and emotional makeup of the individual crafting it. It may or may not work the same for you. Create your own installation plan. Define and design your program to fit where you are and make adjustments along the way.

3. Implementation

Information leads to installation, which leads to implementation, or there will be zero results. To implement properly you have to act, track, and react.

First, I had to obey the schedule and put the mileage in. Second, I had to track the results so I could know if I was improving and hitting the targets. Finally, I had to react and take the tracked results, and rework my plan so I could become better faster.

Armed with knowledge, and my new and improved training structure, I ran 29 miles in August and 78 miles in September. October 4, I entered the half, and finished ahead of the balloon ladies!

As you’re own CIO, you continually learn and earn from the effort you put in.

If your goal is to write a book, you learn how to write (information), you get a writing guide, and tailor it to you (installation), then you write each day (implementation.) Initially, the goal may have been 2,000 words a day. After a week of tracking, you notice that 1,450 words a day always seems easy, but the last 550 felt impossible. In fact, you were losing about 45 minutes a day with those last words. You adjust. You react, redraw your plan a bit, and know you have a way to make progress on your goal of writing the book without losing your mind or wasting time.

As you’re own CIO, you continually learn and earn from the effort you put in. You always feel challenged and make progress. You’re always aware of where you are in relation to your goals, and are able to make the needed tweaks to remain focused and on fire!

The ultimate bonus of living the intentional life—as my own CIO—is what I teach my clients… information leads to installation carried out through implementation, which results in transformation. No one can ever take that away from you!