Goal setting is crucial to any business. Running a business without goals is like hiking through the woods without a GPS or map: you can get lost very easily and risk never reaching your destination.
This guide will show you how to achieve your business goals in the following ways:
- Breaking them down
- Using the SMART method
- Tracking your progress
- Committing to your goals
- Staying flexible
- Keeping your eye on the ball
- Opening a Countingup business current account
What are business goals?
Goals set wide, overarching targets that help you define where you want your business to go. Establishing your goals is an important step of business planning as it impacts aspects like your daily operations, marketing strategy, and financial needs.
It can be difficult to measure your progress towards your goals as they don’t always involve set numbers or clear targets. Still, there are ways you can increase your chances of achieving your business goals.
How to achieve your business goals
We’ve listed some useful tips and advice that will help you hit your target and take your business where you want it to go.
Break them down
Business goals tend to be long-term, meaning they require a lot of time, planning, and effort. It can get overwhelming as you may not know where to start.
The first step is to break down your business goals into smaller action steps that will move your company closer to the final target. Setting precise targets and objectives allows you to make smaller wins more often, which will help you stay focused and motivate yourself to keep going. That focus and motivation will empower you to achieve your goals more effectively.
Use the SMART method
Learning to set goals properly is a big part of actually achieving them. Many companies use the SMART method to set goals that are:
- Specific: the more specific you make your goal, the easier it’ll be to achieve it. For example, instead of saying “I want to grow my business”, you can say “I want to triple my client base in the next year”.
- Measurable: you need a way to track and measure your progress towards your goal. Building on the previous example, you might measure your success by how many new clients you sign on each month and how long it takes to convert them.
- Attainable: make sure your business goals are realistic and achievable. If you’ve just started your business, setting a business goal to reach £1M in turnover in the next year might be a bit much. Instead, you could aim for a smaller number like £10,000-£20,000 in the first year.
- Relevant: make your targets and objectives relevant to your business goals. For example, if you want to triple your client base in the next year, relevant smaller targets might be signing a certain number of new clients per month for the next six months.
- Timely: set a time frame for your goals that you know you can achieve. For example, “I will sign on three new clients in the next month”.
Track your progress
There are different ways you can measure your progress towards a business goal. You can do monthly or weekly check-ins to see how you’re getting on and if you need to do something differently. It may also be useful to create milestones based on progress (like signing three new clients in the next month), so you can easily see if you’re on track or not.
Commit to your goals
This one might seem obvious, but it’s easy to get distracted as a business owner since so many things require your attention. It’s also likely that you have more than one business goal you want to achieve, but trying to hit every target at once might cause you to miss them all instead. The best way is to concentrate on one thing at a time and focus all your efforts on that.
You can focus on multiple goals if you can work on them at the same time. For example, if you want to grow your client base and expand your network. Expanding your network could help you find new clients, and new clients could help you expand your network. See? These goals go hand in hand.
While you need to have a clear plan for how to accomplish your goals, it’s important to stay flexible and be able to adjust your goals if you need to. Staying agile will enable you to quickly change direction when necessary to maintain your progress.
For example, you have a goal to triple your client base in the next year, but you sign on a client that doubles your workload and income. In that case, you might need to look at hiring new staff to manage the new workload rather than signing on new clients.
Keep your eye on the ball
In this case, the ball is your end business goal. It’s important to stay flexible and adjust to your circumstances, but don’t lose sight of why you set your targets in the first place. Staying focused on what you’re trying to accomplish in the end will help you stay on track and move your company in the right direction.
Just because you sign on a large client and enormous project, it doesn’t mean you should give up tripling your client base. You should still work towards that end goal, but maybe you extend the timeline to two years instead of one? Or perhaps you now need to include individual targets for your new staff?
The point is to adjust your plan as you go along to make the most out of your situation but to stay focused on your final target.
Free up time so you can focus on your goals
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