Think back to when you established your business, do you remember why you did it and what you were trying to achieve? If you really want your business to be a success, you need to clearly define your personal goals and engineer your business to reach them.
Identify your goals
Your goal may be for financial security or for freedom, or for something completely different. But before you can begin the journey to your destination, you need to know where you’re going!
Setting goals in your business is a great contributor to success; the process will set a direction for pursuing growth and commitment from your team. And, effective goals ensure your business is focused on the activities that contribute to the goals. When setting goals, make sure you answer these three questions:
- What are you trying to achieve?
- Why do you want to achieve it?
- Does it align with your personal goals and ideal life?
Every identified goal must meet the following criteria:
Specific – Be as descriptive and specific as possible – avoid being vague in any aspect of the goal.
Time focused – When do you need to achieve the goal by?
Achievable – Unachievable goals will not get buy-in from your team.
Plan – Have a clear plan on how you will achieve this goal, include milestones along the way to make the goal more manageable.
Track – Regularly monitor progress so that adjustments can be made if necessary.
Align your team
As effective business owners and leaders, we must begin by getting our team’s buy-in. Members of your team will have their own individual goals and aspirations. By involving and sharing your aspirations with your team and willing them to be part of the goal, your team will feel motivated to successfully achieve the goal.
Sharing and communicating with your team will align their goals to yours. It’s important to discuss how you can collectively reach your goals. The performance of a team that works together to achieve a common goal is far superior than a group of employees that work individually to promote their own successes. Read more about what makes a successful team here.
But remember that goals can’t change without the buy-in of the team. Changing deadlines, available resources or creating new objectives is likely to demotivate the team and destroy their belief in the goal. They will feel their hard work has gone unnoticed or that you’ve lost focus on the original aim. If the goal needs to change remember to communicate the reasons with your entire team and acknowledge their dedication and hard work so far.
Andy Sleet and Hugo Heij discuss setting and achieving business goals in more detail on Episode 084 of the Fluid Business Podcast.