By Evan Vitale
I’ve been writing about setting and reach goals in my personal blog, so I thought I’d shift gears and write here about setting goals for your business.
Is there such a thing? Can you – or do you – set goals for your business?
For many business owners, goal setting is different depending on the stage or their business. Start-ups have many goals they might set (and need to reach) during their first few years in business. Other businesses might set and seek growth or revenue goals for the upcoming quarter or year, while larger companies want to see better returns for their investors and, perhaps more expansion into new markets.
No matter the goals you set for your business, the most important step you can take is to make sure your goals are specific.
For example, instead of creating a simple goal such as “we want to increase sales,” be more specific and set a goal like this: “we want to increase our revenues by increasing more web traffic to our company’s website.”
A goal of “let’s get more clients next year” is not specific. How many new clients do you want to earn?
Typically, business goals fall into one of three categories – Financial, Customer or Brand goals.
Financial goals including profit and cash flow; expenses; bank balances, etc.
Customer goals may include improving the customer/client satisfaction level; retention goals in building a loyal customer base and, of course, growing your customer base.
Brand goals, which are difficult to define, may include an increase in advertising; community service; more involvement in social media and public relations, etc.
Goals can be long-term or short-term, but goals are not as simple as a “to do” list. As you create goals for your business, break them down into bite-size chunks. What steps will you have to take in order to reach your goal(s) and how will you get there? What obstacles are in your way and how will you overcome them?
If you are going to set new goals for the upcoming year, start planning and preparing now. Good business goals aren’t set over a bottle of bubbly on New Year’s Eve. Take a look at your business and start generating goal ideas before the holiday rush approaches.