We all want to know how to advance our business and one of the best ways to set yourself up for success is setting goals. But we're not talking about just setting any type of goals, we are discussing SMART goals!
So you have a service or product-based business and you have certain goals that you're looking to reach by a certain period. How do you effectively reach these goals?
Is merely setting a goal enough to help you navigate and accomplish it?
My friends the answer is no!
When you're trying to see progress in your business, strategic planning of your goals helps you Visualize, Analyze and Implement strategies to reach your goals. Where do I start?" you may ask.
Let's start with setting goals.
It's so important to set goals that motivate you.
"Your goals should have a defined outcome and should be something that benefits both you and your business.
Don't let money be the primary target.
Yes, you may want to bring in more income. But how you achieve that goal will depend on factors like improving client relationships, expanding your business into new markets, or broadening your knowledge and expertise."
Do this quick exercise first:
Write down why your goal is important to you and how it benefits your business and career. Once you can address that, you'll have a goal you're more committed to achieving.
Now that you have set your goals we can jump into smart goals!
SMART goal incorporates all of these criteria to help focus your efforts and increase the chances of achieving your goal.
DISCLAIMER: I am sharing these S.M.A.R.T Goals tips with you as one way to help you achieve your goals strategically. This in no way implies that this method is the only way for you to reach where to want to go with your business. This is just one method I have found useful.
SMART GOALS DEFINED
The goal should have a clear, highly specific endpoint. If your goal is too vague, it won’t be SMART.
You need to be able to accurately track your progress, so you can judge when a goal will be met.
Of course, setting a goal that’s too ambitious will see you struggle to achieve it. This will sap your motivation, both now and in the future.
The goal you pick should be pertinent to your chosen field or should benefit you directly.
Finally, setting a timeframe for your goal helps quantify it further, and helps keep your focus on track.
Checking our goals with these 5 criteria gives a guideline for our business goals. Also, the process of creating these goals helps anyone else on your team. The strategic goals make the planning, implementation and closing stages all much easier to manage.
Let's see how we can apply these to our businesses!
Example: Business Goal for the next 4-6 Months
Build New Brand
Solidify Who my audience is and begin targeting them
Gain 5-10 or 10- 20 (loyal) clients or customers in the next 4-6 months based on whether the business is service-based or product-based.
Specific - Build Brand by knowing who I'm targeting and target with content-specific engaging ads to gain 5-10 (service-based) or 15-25 (product-based) loyal clients/customers.
Measurable - You need to be able to accurately track your progress, so you can judge when a goal will be met. Gain 5-10 Service-based (10-20) Product-based Loyal clients in 4-6 months
Achievable- Grow audience reach to convert viewers into clients in 4-6 months. Now you ask yourself is this an achievable goal? or is it overly ambitious? Gaining client trust and customer loyalty takes time, so make sure you are giving yourself a realistic target in the number of clients and the amount of time of getting clients/customers.
Relevant - Look at your goals and ask yourself " Do I have a value that supports this?" Is it relevant at this time? Is this business just for money or do you have a value that supports why you are in it? Knowing why you do things will help in how far your business goes not just financially but in its reputation.
Time- Dimensioned - This needs to have time parameters so that it is not an ongoing goal. You can always create a new goal or tweak your current goal but you need to have a checkpoint to say that it will be accomplished in a time frame. 4-6 months
All of this information will help you to track your business progress, evaluate if you can achieve your goal in this time frame or if it is unrealistic and give yourself more time based on your Data. Once you have tweaked your goals again you can see your progress and continue to use this as a guide for greater growth.
For some, the SMART Goals method may not work and you may still feel anxious and overwhelmed about your business goals.
So here are 3 bonus tips for those that don't feel that SMART Goals or Goals, in general, are effective.
( Bonus Gems!)
1. Just avoid Goals
Yes, you heard me right! Let's get rid of the goals!
Your view of how successful your business is and your self-esteem can become consumed with this one thing.
When we don't see our goals happen exactly when we planned, we can overlook all of the work done beforehand.
Goal setting for some can create a lot of stress so let's rectify this shall we!
Being intentional about acknowledging what you have already accomplished for your business can be more helpful than creating a rock-solid list of goals. Once you accept your version of success and what it looks like for your values, then you can get an idea of what direction you want to head in next.
2. Focus on personal growth & kicking habits.
Focusing on a growth mindset helps take away the pressure, while still making progress.
You can set goals, but also examine habits that need to be kicked or habits needed for growth and then work from there.
3. Removing Limiting Mindsets, Patterns & Behaviors
"Most people focus on how much they need to work, plan and hustle in order to get what they want in life." #hustleculture.
Honestly, that might just be the thing that is holding you back. Do you regularly feel that if you don't keep hustling and obsessing over money and success then they won't happen? Or the soul-crushing feeling that you not smart enough to pull off a certain business?
All of these are Limiting & Poverty Mindsets that are rooted in fear and affect your decision-making. Negative thoughts of this nature lower your confidence, your effectiveness and block you from reaching freedom in success.
Exercise: Start monitoring your thought patterns and behaviors. Once you discover what fears are blocking you, you can begin to think and plan more effectively. This will ensure that your goals aren't created from a place of fear but out of passion, things that motivate you, and most importantly, they align with your values.
The last thing I want to leave you with if you take nothing else away from this weeks post is
"Your values measure your success, nothing else."
Until next time!