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5 Tips for Goal Setting in the New Year

Jennifer Williams

201 GoalsIt’s a new year, a clean slate for your business.  You’ve reflected on your past year, the good and the bad, and now it’s time to move forward.  So what’s the next step for a great year ahead? Answer: Goal setting.

Think of a marathon….what is the end goal for a runner? The finish line.  In order to get to the finish line, a runner must train for months.  They start off with smaller distances and record their times, and eventually build each week they train to reach their ultimate goal. 

Goal setting is fundamental for all businesses--big or small.  Goal setting is a great way measure and motivate your business for this new year.  It helps keep you organized and in control of your business’ vision and direction of where you want it to go.  Goals can be simple, complex, small or large. It’s important to set effective and achievable goals, here are some tips to consider when goal setting:

1. Be specific.

Set specific and descriptive goals.  Looking to increase your social media presence? Don’t just set your goal as, “increase social media presence.”  Instead, set your goal as, “increase social media presence by doing x, y and z.”  By being specific, it lays out a descriptive plan on what you are going to do to achieve your goal. 

2. Set a timeline with checkpoints and deadlines.

It’s important to not abandon your goals.  We understand things get busy and we often abandon our goals, (even the small ones).  In your goal setting plan, set checkpoints and deadlines with specific dates.  This will keep help you actually see your goals being achieved one step at a time.

3. Stay realistic, but don’t be afraid to dream big.

It’s great to have high expectations, but make sure your goals can be achieved. Think is this practical?  Stay grounded, but don’t be afraid to set your goals high!  Remember anything is possible if you set your mind to it! (You started your own business, so you’re already one step ahead!)

Also, not all goals need to be so large scale--set small goals! Small achievements lead to big achievements!

4. Track, analyze and adjust if needed.

Track your progress, and analyze what you did and how you did it.  Create a simple tracking system use a spreadsheet, and when you analyze your tracking, ask yourself: “Is this moving us towards our goal?”

Also, don’t be afraid to adjust your goals.  Things happen and focuses may need to shift during specific times, so don’t be afraid to adjust if necessary.  Just don’t have the mindset that you can always adjust your goals, you can do it!

5. Share your goals.

Display your goals in your workplace, create constant reminders for you and your team.  The more you are reminded of them, the more likely you are to be more accountable to your goals.

Goal setting is imperative to a successful business.  By updating your goals, it helps you keep your business moving in the direction you want it to go and remain loyal to its’ mission.  Remember…...“A goal without a plan is just a wish!”