Now is the time when many of us reflect on this year and begin looking forward to what the new year may bring. Take the time to acknowledge your accomplishments and maybe some lessons too. It’s important. But then move on — and focus on what is ahead of you. It starts with setting goals.
Whether you own a business or work for someone else, setting business, professional and personal goals pays off.
7 Do’s & Don’ts for Setting Goals
Do Write Them Down & Keep Them Visible. Your goals clarify what you want or a desired outcome. If you are truly committed to achieving them, put them in writing and keep them visible so you view them often. Whether that be daily, weekly or something else – don’t set them and forget them!
Don’t Go Overboard. Since goals help keep you focused, too many can mess you up. Keep the number of goals manageable – and set them for all areas of your life and business. I recommend 4-5 personal goals and no more than 5-7 critical business goals.
Do Be Specific. As they say, vague goals create vague results. A goal like earn more money (which most people want) is too general to propel you to act. If you want to earn $100,000 next year, say so. Put it in writing. Now you can focus on what you need to do to achieve it.
Do Make Them Measurable. Goals are accomplished over time — so you will want to monitor your progress and stay on course. Quantify goals so you can track how you are doing. What we measure, we can achieve so build measurements into your personal or business goals.
Measurements can include actual results or improvement percentages — whichever works best for you. Here’s a few simple examples to demonstrate measurable goals: Lose 20 pounds, Increase salary/wages by 20%, Arrive home by 6:00 pm, Read 2 books per month, Hire 2 new employees, Increase customer base by 10%.
Do Set Deadlines. All goals are not created equal. Some are more critical. Some take more time. Some are contingent on others. Establishing due dates for your goals and related actions helps you prioritize what is important and creates urgency to get it done. Deadlines also help you avoid procrastination.
Do Think Bigger. Set goals that are challenging but realistic given the time-frame you establish. Get out of your comfort zone and put some stretch in those goals — so they actually excite and motivate you to take the action to achieve them.
Don’t Ignore the Why. When setting goals, ask yourself “Why is this important to me?”. Know the motivation behind your goals to make them more meaningful. Why do you want to earn 20% more this year or be home by 6:00 pm? The why is often what really drives you — to keep going throughout the year.
Goals without actions are simply dreams.
Nothing will happen until you take action. So once you identify your goals, take a few minutes to jot down what you need to do in order to accomplish them. Some goals require more tasks than others, but your road map to success requires you to take action.
As a final thought, share your goals with someone who has a stake in your success. Accountability goes a long way and can be the ingredient you need to put you over the top!
Attention Business Owners. Do you struggle with putting your goals together and developing a road map for success? Then check out my Ultimate Guide to Action Planning. This step-by-step guide will put you on the right path.
Get Started. Stay On Track
Do you want your business to take a major leap forward next year? To get off to a quick start and stay on track? Then my accountability program may be just what you need. More than accountability, this program provides business owners with structure, another set of eyes and practical advice too! And it all starts with setting goals. Click here to learn more or contact me directly.