5 Key Elements of Achievable, Successful Goals
As the year draws to a close, business owners must remember the importance of setting smart goals for their business that focus on the coming year.
You have new wisdom to draw on from your business’s successes and trials in the past year, and new data about market trends and customer demands to incorporate into the coming year’s business goals.
Many businesses set goals that are too vague, unmeasurable, or unrealistic. These goals hinder business growth; they are hard to act on and leave the business owner/employees feeling unsure of what to do to accomplish them.
Do You Mean Smart Goals or S.M.A.R.T. Goals?
Well . . . both, actually. The SMART goal acronym is a tool used to help you set your business goals. Using it helps you set goals that are:
Using this system to guide your goal-setting process will make your goals more achievable, which in turn increases your business success.
Setting SMART goals for your business can be a bit overwhelming. Let’s break it down so you understand the purpose of each step.
Is Your Goal SPECIFIC?
Smart goals answer these questions:
- Who: Who will be in charge of executing this goal and measuring its progress?
- What: What do you want to accomplish? Be specific.
- When: When do you want to focus on this goal?
- Why: Will this goal attract new customers? Increase profit? Increase employee retention or satisfaction?
- How: List the steps/tasks required to accomplish the goal.
Is Your Goal MEASURABLE?
Smart goals are measurable; this allows you to determine if you are on track and gives you a solid picture of what you are working toward.
First, decide on an indicator of your progress. Is it profits? Employee retention rates? Production quantities/statistics? Once you have picked the indicator, create your goal using the chosen measurement.
Designate who will monitor this measurement and keep you updated on progress toward the goal.
Is Your Goal ACHIEVABLE?
Have you ever worked for someone who set goals that were next to impossible to achieve? It’s not fun. A good goal is challenging, but also attainable.
Look at the goal from multiple perspectives. Answer these questions:
- Do I have the financial resources to achieve this goal?
- Do I have the personnel resources to achieve this goal? This includes not only how many employees you have, but deciding if the assigned personnel can handle the additional workload that this goal will create.
Make sure you aren’t setting your team, or yourself up for failure.
Is Your Goal RELEVANT?
Make sure the goal fits into your business plan. Define how the goal affects business success: Does it increase profits? Attract new customers?
Each goal should accomplish a piece of a larger objective to create a successful, healthy business. Make sure the goals are focused on areas of the business you want to grow or improve in the coming year.
Is Your Goal TIMELY?
Effective goals have a start date and completion deadline. Deadlines create motivation and structure for effective planning and execution. Look at the proposed deadline and break the timeline into achievable steps. If you don’t have enough time to accomplish each step, re-evaluate the deadline so your process is achievable.
Time to Set Smart Goals for Your Business!
Using the 5 key elements of achievable, successful goals ensures that you are setting smart and attainable goals for your company. You are also giving your employees a clear target to focus on and motivation to succeed.
Don’t forget to incorporate what you have learned from the past year’s successes and failures into your goal-setting process.
This combination of historical wisdom and setting SMART goals for your business in the coming year will maximize your business growth and employee satisfaction.
Need SMART Goal Planning Expertise/Assistance?
Are you looking for an experienced professional to help you set your business goals for the new year? Robin Kramer is an Online Business Manager that has been working with small businesses for 23 years. Her varied experience enables her to step in and help get your business functions streamlined, setting you up to achieve the business growth and profitability you’ve dreamed of.
To learn more about Robin’s skills and how she could help your business, contact her for a free consultation today.