Last time, we wrote about Vision and the natural follow up for has to be goal setting.
A clever man said “If you aim at nothing, you will hit it every time”
Large businesses, successful people and winning athletes set themselves clear goals to achieve their specific objectives. However many smaller businesses lack these sort of focused goals. When we ask business owners what their goals are, we often get the response “survive”, “get more sales” or “pay the mortgage”.
As the clever man said “If you aim at nothing, you will hit it every time”
Whether you are a large corporate or a small owner run business, your success depends on your ability to set and achieve goals and the best way to do this is to adopt SMART goal setting.
So, what are SMART Goals?
S.M.A.R.T. is an acronym for specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-based and will take you from vague goals that are never achieved, to goals that will drive your business to achieve results.
So what do they actually mean?
Specific - Great goals are well-defined and focused. For a banker “open 10 new accounts per month for the next 3 months” is more likely to achieve something than “get more sales”! Ryan Blair, The Goals Guy eloquently states, "Focus creates a powerful force: goal power. The moment you focus on a goal, your goal becomes a magnet, pulling you and your resources toward it. The more focused your energies, the more power you generate".
Measurable - A goal which cannot be measured is like a football game without a score? If you have quantified goals you can measure, you can check if you are on track, know if you are winning. Something as simple as a daily goal sheet can keep you focused on delivering results and can have an amazing effect on you, your staff and your business.
Attainable - There is no point setting goals you cannot reach. If your dreams are large you need to develop goals one small step at a time, which lead you towards your ultimate dream. Too often businesses set unreachable goals, fail and demotivate all involved resulting in future goals not even being tried for.
Relevant – Goals have to be relevant to the conditions you operate in. For example, if the economy is in recession or you have new competitors it may not be relevant for your goal to be to increase sales by 100%. Your goals have to work within the reality of your market and business climate.
Time-Based - If any time will do, any time will be when it is done! Without a time structure, goals and objectives won’t be achieved. Whatever your goals are “to increase sales by 20 %”, “sign up 3 new clients” or even “put in place a business plan to drive your business forward”, make sure you have a time-frame written in to them.
Once you have created your SMART business goals, each one needs to have an action plan that supports it so that you undertake the necessary activity to achieve your goals. You will also need to review them from time to time just to make sure they remain SMART, that you are on target and to allow you to make any adjustments needed.
Goal setting for your business is essential to its success, but remember they have to be SMART and to help you set them here is a simple goal setting worksheet which you can use to focus your business.
If you think that you might like help setting your goals, or if you simply want to discuss something else in your business, why not take advantage of our FREE Business Review Meeting . Simply email we'll arrange a time to come and see you.