You Need To Set Goals For Your Small Business.
Happy New Year to you all! The year 2015 has gone forever but the impact will still be felt in your small business this year. It does not matter how the year 2015 was to you or your small business. We have another opportunity to do whatever we were unable to do last year. Yes, it is another year; a year of opportunities and challenges. I hope you are not surprised to hear that the year 2016 has come with its own challenges. As an entrepreneur, the word ‘challenge’ should turn you on by now. Without challenges, there will be no opportunities. Challenges are opportunities in disguise. So, let me ask you these questions: What are your set goals for the year 2016? What do you plan to do or become in the year 2016? Do you have definite set goals for the year? If you don’t, it is not too late to set goals for your small business this year. Why do you need to set goals for yourself or your small business?
A wise man said, you cannot arrive at the future you don’t see. That is true. Nothing happens by chance. If you want to succeed, you must plan for it. Possibly you have not been setting goals in the past. This means that goal seeting may be strange to you. That is why I am here for you. How do you set goals? Setting goals is not a difficult thing to do. You just need to decide on definite things you like to achieve in the year 2016. Make sure your goals have these attributes. The attributes are summarised with the acronym ‘SMART’. SMART goal setting is one of the most effective and yet least used tools for achieving goals. It stands for: specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and timely. Let’s take them one after the other.
You have the responsibility to define exactly what you want to achieve. A specific goal has a much greater probability of being accomplished than a general goal. The more specific your description, the higher the probability you will achieve it. For instance, your goal may be to achieve 20% growth in turnover this year. Questions you will need to ask yourself when setting goals are “W” questions such as:
Who: Who is responsible?
What: What do I want to achieve?
Where: Where is the location?
When: That is, a time frame.
Which: You should identify requirements and constraints.
Why: Why must you accomplish the goals?
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You must have heard people say, ‘What cannot be measured cannot be managed. Therefore, your goals must be measurable. You must establish concrete criteria for measuring progress toward the attainment of each goal you set. Measurability applies to both the end result and the milestones along the way to attaining set goals. It answers the following questions: how much, how often, how many? The milestones will let you know whether you you are on the right track to achieving your set goals or not.
You should ensure that the goals you are setting are achievable. You must consider the attitudes, abilities, skills, and financial capacity you require to attain the goals. You must ensure that you have what it takes to do what you are setting out to do. If you set goals that are too high for you, it is very likely you will not be able achieve them.
I believe your small business have values, short and long term objectives. Your goals you are setting must be relevant to what your small business wants to achieve. Therefore, you need to first of all understanding your organizational or personal vision, mission and purpose. With this, you will be able to align your goals accordingly.
Your set goals should be time bound in other to create a sense of urgency. Therefore, you need to put a deadline on your goal and set some benchmarks. Deadlines will make you and other people involved to switch into action. When you set a deadline, there will be internal pressure to accomplish the goal.