When you create goals for your business, you want to ensure they are achievable. But you also want to ensure that they challenge you. Consider what you want to accomplish and what defines your business success in the next few years and create achievable goals related to those outcomes.
Unfortunately, many business owners and business leaders don’t put much effort into goals let alone achieving those goals.
We’re going to give you a few tips for choosing firm goals for your business. Whether these are short-term business goals or long-term business goals, they should be realistic and achievable.
No matter what the current state of your business is, we’ve made these tips actionable by all sizes of businesses.
Consider your business objectives and business strategy.
When choosing firm goals for your business, the key is to create achievable and measurable objectives that are in line with your overall strategy.
Your business strategy should be aligned with the specific goals you set, since they need to be mutually reinforcing if you want to achieve success.
Start by setting long-term goals. These will give you direction and help you identify where you want your business to be in five years, for example. Keep in mind that a long-term goal should be one of your bigger goals with a focus on the big picture.
You should also think about setting short-term goals—ones that you can achieve within a year or less. Make sure these objectives are realistic and achievable. These shorter-term goals may support the longer-term goals.
Then compare the two types of goals, and assess whether they align with each other. If not, then adjust your objectives until they are.
If your goals aren’t aligned, you either need to change your long-term goals or short-term goals or rethink your mission statement or business strategy altogether.
Often times, companies fail to achieve their goals because they are not specific enough. You should have a clear understanding of the steps needed to achieve each goal, as well as the resources required. Then follow up with those goals to ensure you’re on track, which we’ll cover shortly.
Five areas for business goals.
As a business owner, there are generally five key areas to consider when setting firm goals for your business.
- Financial goals.
- Growth goals.
- Customer goals.
- Employee development goals.
- Social goals.
Lets take a look at each business goal in in greater detail to fully understand just how important firm goals are for your business.
Your financial goal should be the first one you consider when creating a plan for your business. After all, if you can achieve these goals (i.e. increase revenue), then you can make achieving the rest of the goals possible.
This will include budgeting for expenses, setting profit margins, and planning for long-term sustainability. Understanding where your money is coming from and going to is essential as it affects all other areas of your business.
An example of a financial goal could be to increase your net profit margin by 10% over the next 12 months. Maybe you want to be more ambitious and you have the resources, so achieving a 25% increase in net profit over the same period of time is your goal.
Setting goals for growth is an important part of any business plan. This includes setting specific goals to increase sales, expand into new markets or gain more customers, and create a long-term vision for the future.
Growth goals are essential as they will ensure your company continues to be profitable and successful.
An example of a growth goal could be to increase your customer base by 15% by the end of the year. If you serviced 200 clients last year, perhaps your objective is 230 new clients for this year.
Your customer goals should be focused on creating and maintaining relationships with your customers. After all, keeping in touch and maintaining good terms with past customers is a critical component of the sales funnel.
This includes providing excellent customer service, offering helpful information, and responding promptly to their inquiries or complaints.
Having clear objectives for your customers will ensure that you’re providing them with the best possible experience.
An example of a customer goal could be to increase customer retention by 10% over the course of a year or maybe to bring in 20 more customer reviews.
Employee Development Goals
Your employees are your greatest asset and developing their skills is essential for any business. Setting goals related to employee development will ensure that your team has the skills and knowledge to excel in their roles.
This could include training, mentorship programs, or even fostering an open environment for collaboration and creativity.
An example of an employee development goal could be to provide at least two professional development courses per quarter for all employees.
Finally, it’s important to set social goals for your business. This could include things like reducing emissions or investing in eco-friendly projects, donating to charities, or volunteering within the community.
Social goals have become increasingly popular as customers are becoming more aware of the impact a company can have on society and its environment.
An example of a social goal could be to reduce paper waste by 25% over the course of a year.
It’s important to remember that setting firm goals for your business is essential for success. Taking the time to consider all five areas of goal-setting will ensure you have a comprehensive plan for your business and are able to build something that serves its customers, employees, and the community. With clear objectives in place, you will be able to monitor your progress and make necessary adjustments as needed.
Regularly review your goals.
If you’re not reviewing your goals, how do you know if your business is on track? How do you know if those business goals are meeting your business objectives?
When you first made your long-term goals, you might’ve used a framework such as SMART goals (specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, time-bound). You can use a framework like that to review your goals as well.
Regardless of how you set your business goals initially, it’s essential to review them to ensure they are still relevant and achievable and make sense in the big picture.
This can be done monthly, quarterly or even yearly. The key is to make sure that the individual goals you set are still achievable and working towards your long-term vision.
When going over your business goals you want to ensure that they are still relevant to your current business situation. Many companies and businesses zero in on other areas and neglect this area.
For example, if the business goal was to increase sales by 10% but market conditions have changed since you originally set it then that goal may no longer be achievable. You may need to change the scope of your business goals or revise them completely.
Your business goals should also still be achievable. This means that they are realistic and attainable given your current resources and capabilities. If they are not, then it’s time to either adjust the goal or replace it with something else that is more reasonable for your business at the moment.
When the market changes, sometimes companies realize that they can no longer achieve their business goals, and that’s fine. No single company can control the market, but you can control other factors and keep your business moving in the right direction.
Monitor and review the progress you’ve made up to this point.
If you’re making progress, then you’re on the right track. If not, consider if any adjustments need to be made or if there are any other strategies you can use to help meet your business goals.
You want to ensure that you’re set to achieve your goal on the timeline you established. If not, then it’s time to make adjustments to get back on track.
Lastly, reviewing your business goals ensures that you stay focused on what’s essential for your business and that you are working towards achieving the results you want. Ensure that all of your resources, both time and money, are being used as efficiently as possible to reach those goals.
Use this review of your established goals to motivate you and your team to keep moving forward to achieve success.
Set goals and be successful!
Setting business goals is essential to ensure success. By taking the time to consider all five areas of goal-setting and implementing a goal-setting process, you can create a comprehensive plan that serves customers, employees, and the community. You want to ensure you’re choosing firm goals for your business to keep your team motivated and make your company successful.
Regularly reviewing your company goals will help you stay on track and make necessary adjustments when needed. Additionally, it’s important to assess if those objectives are still relevant and achievable given current market conditions or resources available.
Use this review process as motivation to keep moving forward towards achieving success with your business goals.
With clear objectives in place, even if you set some highly ambitious goals, there’s no limit to what you can achieve!