Setting goals is an important part of any business as they set the stage for growth and profit. For a small business owner or an entrepreneur, being clear on what it is we want to achieve is crucial to ensuring our success. Without any goals to guide our actions, business people run the risk of aimlessly wandering until they fail.
Business goals help us to identify where we want to be and how we will get there. With our main goals in place, we can outline the steps we need to take.
1. SET GOALS THAT MOTIVATE YOU
The best way of getting something done is by making it something you want to do.
If something is not a priority to you, then it will lurk on your to-do list for eons without any plans to do something about it. Ask yourself whether this job is critical for the business or not: If the answer is no then you can remove it. If the answer is yes, break it down into smaller manageable processes to make it easier to accomplish.
It’s also good to know your strengths and weaknesses. If something is on your to-do list that you know does not fall within your ability or skills, seek to delegate as much as you can. Your time is the most vital part of your business and if you take hours struggling to do something, it’s probably not a good use of your time.
2. BREAK IT DOWN
The second step is to break down your goals. Business goals are often long-term and require a lot of time and effort. By breaking down your goals into manageable action steps, it is easier to focus on what you need to do right now and not get overwhelmed by the process.
A good way to break down your business goals is by creating an action plan made up of individual tasks that each includes one clearly defined action. By thinking in terms of baby steps, it’s easy to make progress and have small accomplishments every day.
3. COMMIT TO THE PROCESS
Effective goal setting requires clarity about what the goal involves, knowledge on what kind of effort will be required, and specific reasons why the goal is important to your business. It also includes a plan for how you will accomplish each step, and perhaps most importantly, a commitment to seeing the goal through to completion.
If you are unable to commit to the goal by taking the time to develop a plan and scheduling the time to focus on the action steps that will bring you closer to your goal, you will face an unnecessarily difficult challenge.
4. STAY FLEXIBLE
Very few things happen exactly as we anticipate, both in business and in life. It’s important to be able to adjust to changes and modify your plan as necessary, without losing momentum.
While it’s important to have a clearly defined plan for accomplishing your goals, you should avoid rigidity and narrow-minded thinking. The more flexible you are and the quicker you can change directions when you need to, the easier it will be for you to keep progress steady in the face of the unexpected.
5. ACCEPT IMPERFECTIONS AND SETBACKS
Being at the helm of your own business means that you are accountable to your own high standards. However, there are times we need to accept that not everything we do will be perfect. The fear of failure often stops us from moving forward because we fail to see the learning opportunity or new ways of thinking that may come from taking the first step.
When you find that your progress is being hindered by your own inner critic, know that there is often never a perfect time or situation to do anything. Yes, you may make some mistakes, but you will learn from them and adapt what you do for next time.
6. DON’T FORGET TO CELEBRATE
It’s incredibly important to celebrate your wins! Often it can be too easy to pick out where you feel something could have been done better, or it didn’t succeed at all. By celebrating your success you are taking the time to acknowledge the effort that has gone into your achievement. Take some time to review each stage of the process and you’ll find it’s a powerful way to close each chapter and keep you and your team renewed and revitalised for the next stage ahead.
Successful goal setting is all about making a commitment to doing whatever it takes, a little every day, to get from point A to point B and successfully accomplish your goal. Are you going to commit to making 2018 the year you finally tackle that big goal in your small business?
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