If you want to make your business the best it can be, you have to be willing to establish and track goals. Goals create a clear path for your company and get everyone headed in the same direction. Without goals, you have no way to monitor progress or keep yourself or your team accountable. All goals are important, no matter how big or small they are.
Step 1: Self-Assessment
This is a tool that is critical to setting goals. A thorough self-assessment can help with employee development, team performance, and organizational change. “A business is merely an extension of the people managing it and mirrors their abilities,” notes the Entrepreneur Magazine Small Business Advisor. Entrepreneurs may be able to improve their chances of success in business by undertaking an honest and detailed self-assessment.
How to Complete a Company Self-Assessment:
These 11 questions provided by Centric Consulting provide a baseline for creating your own company self-assessment.
- Has working remote become a “new norm” for you?
- What is causing your business to struggle in today’s reality?
- How can your business become more resilient with uncertainty in the market and workplace?
- Have you done a SWOT (Strength, Weakness, Opportunity and Threats) analysis of different business units in the new norm?
- Do you have visibility into the health of your processes, activities and workforce (such as efficiency, SLAs, utilization, and more?)?
- Are there additional opportunities to automate your business process with robotic process automation or business process management to optimize remote work activities?
- How do you set up your company and teams to become more competitive or “wow” your customers in this evolving (remote) market?
- How would your employees describe working at your company?
- How would your customers describe doing business with your company?
- How can you prepare to perform company activities virtually, as needed?
- Do you have enterprise processes, applications and infrastructure to support working remotely?
Reflect on each of these and give yourself honest feedback. A thorough and detailed self-assessment will also help your company to identify future goals and become more adaptive and resilient moving forward.
Step Two: Know Your Priorities
A SWOT analysis can help you to truly see your top business strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. Here’s a quick rundown of how a SWOT analysis works:
- S (Strengths): What is your business doing well internally?
- W (Weaknesses): Where does your business fall short of success internally?
- (Opportunities): What can your business be doing to get a boost externally?
- T (Threats): What kind of actors can harm your business externally?
This analysis should be completed annually and can help you determine what areas need attention and start coming up with the goals you believe you can achieve (or come close to achieving) in the next few months or years.
Step Three: Choose Your Goals
Based on your SWOT analysis, you can determine your goals for 2022. Here are a few tips to keep in mind when choosing your company goals this year.
- Be as descriptive and crystal clear as possible.
- Go into the details when setting a goal. Don’t just say “increase customer count”. Instead, choose exact dollar amounts or percentages.
- Find a way to keep track of your goals that works for you and your team.
- Meet with your team to discuss your goals, keep everyone in the loop and brainstorm ideas.
- Set deadlines to hold yourself accountable.
- Choose goals that are specific and challenging as opposed to vague and unrealistic.
- If you’re a solo entrepreneur or freelancer, create a support team where you can talk about the goals you’re working on and ask friends or loved ones to hold you accountable.
- Avoid comparing your goals to others and thinking that you should be doing the same thing.
- Join a community online where you can share ideas with other business owners and support each other’s goals with feedback, advice and encouragement.
- Choose goals that you truly feel passionate about and genuinely want to achieve, rather than trying to check boxes of things you think you “should” do.
- Take time to visualize what it will look like when you achieve them.
Step Four: Commit and Celebrate
Once you set your goals, make the commitment and stick to it. Don’t second-guess your goals once they are decided. Commit to yourself as you would keep a commitment to your best friend. Enjoy the ride, track your results, and celebrate milestones and achievements along the way to stay motivated throughout the process.
According to one study, people with goals are 10 times more likely to succeed. The same rings true for businesses. Setting new goals is part of running and growing a business. If you want to be successful in the long run, learn how to set goals and achieve them.
As a struggling young actor, Jim Carrey used to picture himself being the greatest actor in the world. He even wrote a check out to himself for 10 million dollars when he was not popular and dated it for many years in the future. Memo line: for acting services. Many years later, that visualization actually came true because of the way Jim Carrey focused on his goals. If you visualize your goals in great detail, you are far more likely to stay motivated, pursue creative solutions and do the work necessary to achieve them.