Goal setting is one of the most important activities you can do in your business. Goals help you stay focused and they can prevent your business from becoming stagnant. Your business goals keep you moving forward and set the stage for building a better business.
Although we often think of goal setting as something we do at the start of every year, the truth is that it is extremely important to work on your business goals all year long. You should be setting goals multiple times each year, tracking your progress, and refining the strategies you are following in order to achieve your goals on an ongoing basis. Depending on your business, we find setting aside a dedicated hour or two each month or quarter keeps you on track!
While some entrepreneurs love planning, others understandably feel overwhelmed by the process. How do you decide on just a handful of goals that take priority, with so many moving parts that make up a business?
In order to assist you, we here at creditte have set out a list of these tips that can help you get started brainstorming how your business can plan for greater success in the year ahead.
Is it time to redefine your business?
Before you begin, ask yourself is the elevator pitch you used a year ago – even six months ago – still accurate? Unless you are crystal clear on who you are as a company, whom you’re here to serve, and what you hope to achieve in the next one to three years, it’s going to be hard to come up with meaningful goals.
Take a look at your company vision, mission statement, and core values. If they need tweaking to reflect where your business is today and where you want it to go, start there. Then you can move on to setting some useful long and short-term goals.
Big picture planning
Entrepreneurs dream big—and they should! Thinking big can lead to groundbreaking products and services that become the foundation of innovative, successful companies.
When it comes to goal-setting, thinking big is great, too. But in order to make those big ideas like “increasing market share” or “growing profits” happen, you need to break them down into smaller, specific goals and strategies tied to a budget and timeline.
Stuck for Ideas?
Below are some goals to help you get the ball rolling…
- Create a new product or service offering
- Reduce ongoing business expenses
- Create a new customer service process
- Increase traffic on your website, blog, social media channels
- Go paperless
- Conduct a marketing audit
- Create an employee incentive program
- Work on your personal brand
- Schedule a break from your business
Define smaller goals
Thinking through how you’ll achieve your larger objectives can be a fun exercise – one you can turn into a group activity, including your entire team. Sit down and discuss what you know about your customers. Review your historical sales data and look over your up-to-date budget and forecasting.
With all the relevant information at hand and everyone at the table, you can come up with strategies that align with your company vision, assign deadlines, and get buy-in on what everyone needs to do to see your ideas through to completion.
For example, your goals could include:
- Launching a social media campaign the first week of September to attract 100 new followers/20 new mailing list subscribers/10 new prospects by months’ end; or
- Conduct a waste audit in your business and identify cost savings by 31 March.
The key is to define goals that are measurable and achievable.
It’s worthwhile to take some time to reflect on your personal goals as you think through your business goals. Maybe you’ve been wanting to get involved in mentoring, improve your networking skills, or attend more conferences. Self-development is, in a sense, professional development – and vice versa, so include them in your plans.
Of course, coming up with business goals is just one part of the equation. You’ll also need to monitor your progress, noting milestones, and sharing your company achievements with your team on a regular basis. Tracking your results will help your employees stay motivated – and it also gives you the chance to adjust your goals and strategies in time to achieve the best possible results by year’s end.
And as always, if you don’t know where to start, need some guidance on what goals and how to track them, need some accountability? Get in touch
with us today to see how we can help you build a better business!