Work backwards. Reverse engineer. Whatever you want to call it, you just need to do it to achieve your goals.
2020 is quite literally around the corner. For business owners, this signifies the time to plan your goals for the year ahead. To run a successful business, it’s essential to set goals. It provides a sense of direction, motivation, a clear focus, and clarifies importance. By setting goals for yourself, you’re providing yourself with a clear target to aim for.
“Setting goals is the first step in turning the invisible into the visible.”
Once you’re clear on what you want to achieve for the year ahead, you need to create a plan to make it happen. Don’t be daunted by the goal, as anything is possible when you break it down into manageable steps.
- A SMART goal is used to help guide goal setting and stands for:
- Specific: Well defined, clear, and unambiguous
- Measurable: With specific criteria that measure your progress towards the accomplishment of the goal
- Achievable: Attainable and not impossible to achieve
- Realistic: Within reach, realistic, and relevant to your life purpose
- Timely: With a clearly defined timeline, including a starting date and a target date. The purpose is to create urgency.
“All successful people have a goal. No one can get anywhere unless he knows where he wants to go and what he wants to be or do. ”
— Norman Vincent Peale
Splitting the Year Up
Sometimes, setting goals for the whole year can feel overwhelming. It’s a good idea to split the year into quarters with its own smaller goals. These smaller tasks are the stepping stones to reaching your end goal. Not sure where to start? Just look at your end goal and work backwards.
Don’t be daunted by your goals; the very fact you are aiming for something will mean that you will achieve more.
“A goal is not always meant to be reached if often serves simply as something to aim at.”
– Bruce Lee
Keeping Goals Front of Mind
Once you’ve created your goals, ensure you keep them visible every day. This could include printing your goals in a large font and posting them around your home and workspace, choosing an inspiring phone/desktop background, telling others so you stay accountable, posting your goals on social media, making a collage of your goals and putting them above your desk, setting a password on your computer with a goal or placing goals above your kitchen or bathroom sink.
Track your performance
There’s no point in setting goals if you’re not monitoring them regularly.At the end of each quarter, review your performance. If you are not quite where you wanted to be, simply readjust your goals for the next quarter.
When you get busy, it’s easy to neglect your business goals while you’re focussing on client work but when you have to make yourself accountable to someone it really helps. I have both a business coach and an accountability buddy who is a VA. We regularly check in with one another to ensure that we’re on track to reach our goals and we celebrate our wins (big or small) together.
Talking about celebrating, it’s equally important to remember to celebrate your wins. After all, so much time is spent planning goals, creating an action plan and working hard, it only seems right to celebrate your success afterwards.
Celebrating wins not only feels great physically, but it also reinforces the positive attitude and behaviour you want to show up when you face a new challenge or opportunity. When you celebrate, endorphins are released inside your body and you feel incredible. When you accomplish something and don’t take the time to celebrate, you’re robbing yourself of an important feeling that reinforces your success.
“If you set goals and go after them with all the determination you can muster, your gifts will take you places that will amaze you.”
— Les Brown