Do you find goal-setting for your business to be difficult? 73% of entrepreneurs in America agree with you. Setting goals is not so much about the result as it is about the concrete steps leading to it.
Each business is unique, with its own mix of talents. There are also some factors that companies share, such as market shocks and social climate. Here is a guide on how you can set effective business goals.
Establish Your Priorities
When you think of setting business goals, the first thing that comes to mind might be profit. With good reason, you associate it with good business performance. While you may want to focus on maximizing profits right off the bat, there are other types of goals as important.
For example, you can set goals to improve customer service if you lack in that area. You can also set social goals, such as giving back to the community.
The following steps will help you find which part of your business is doing well. You will also see which parts you need to set better goals for. They will help you set priorities for your business.
Assess Internal Factors
Know where your business stands. You can make a list of the intrinsic strong and weak points of your business. When doing this, consider your team and employees.
What are the individual capabilities and limitations of your team members? You can give each person numerical goals, such as quotas or goals for their performance.
For example, your weak point is social media management; you can set a goal to better that. You can quantify this with the reach and interactions of your website or page.
Assess External Factors
Entrepreneurs expect the following factors to affect small businesses in the coming years:
- Social media
- Technological advancements
- Social changes
- COVID-19 pandemic
For example, the pandemic caused a global market shock in 2020. Over 43% of small businesses closed down. You cannot control external factors like this, but it’s now something you should consider in your business plan.
Have a Strategic Framework
When you set business goals, the tricky part is planning workable concrete steps to achieve them. You can adopt a strategic framework to set goals.
For example, there’s the OGSM (objectives, goals, strategies, measures) framework. You can use it to set clear business goals, both numerical and descriptive. You can learn more about the OGSM framework here: https://archpointconsulting.com/ogsm-strategy-guide.
Debrief After Each Action
Setting goals isn’t something you do in one sitting. Your business and environment are dynamic, so your goals should adapt. You set a business plan already, so it’s time to assess if it is effective.
Debrief with your team after each action. Determine what works and how you can improve other strategies.
See if your short-term goal is achievable at this point, and act based on the answer. Your business goals should be well-defined but not set in stone.
Set the Right Business Goals
Your business goals are your destination. Like a map with paved roads, it is not always a straight line to that point. When setting goals, consider all the roads you must take, the stop-overs, and detours.
Being an entrepreneur means being part of a community. Business goals should come with a better experience for both employees and customers. If you want to learn more about being a responsible business owner, check out our other blog posts.