At the start of every new year, the first thing on everyone’s mind are the goals they’ve set. Amidst the excitement of what the new year will bring, planners are custom designed and ordered, in addition to the creation of lists and visual aids. In the beginning everything starts off great, you’re on track with your plans and things are steadily moving in the right direction. But then it happens. You start to lose track and begin to fall behind. The energetic momentum you once had is now equal to that of a snail. You no longer update the expensive custom planner you ordered and your goal list for the year is buried under overdue projects. So what happened? That is the question that a lot of people ask themselves by March when the new year excitement wears off. And truthfully, only they can answer it as they know where they misstepped and found themselves off course.
But we’re not going to let that be you. Here are 10 tips that you can use to ensure that you successfully met all your yearly goals so that you can end 2016 with a bang!
Setting S.M.A.R.T. goals
SMART, an acronym for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Time-Bound, is the most effective way a company can achieve their goals. By using this method you will be setting goals that you know are within your ability to complete, which ultimately moves the company closer to achieving its goals for the year.
Setting long and short term goals
When looking at your yearly goals it can seem impossible that you will get everything done. But it doesn’t have to be that way. You can break those yearly goals into quarterly and weekly goals. The idea is to hit smaller targets that will ultimately lead you to accomplish your long term goals, making completing everything for the year that much easier, and it won’t feel as though you’re not getting anything accomplished by tackling everything all at once.
Writing your goals down on paper in a list is great, but having those very same goals visually laid out in the form of a vision board is even better. It keeps everyone motivated and excited about the goals that have been set for the business. You can also make project boards that allow every one to see how close a tasks is coming to completion.
When running a business there are a lot of things that go into it such as content creation, social media, networking, promotions, events and the list goes on. When one person takes on all of these tasks it can become cumbersome and exhausting. To alleviate this, split up the work with your co-owners and/or delegate tasks to various team members. By allowing others to take the reins in one or more areas of your business you will gain more hours in the day making room for other tasks to be accomplished.
Set individual goals
So the business as a whole has its goals set for the year. But what about everyone else? What are their personal goals? Create a exercise in which your team members lay out what it is they would like to achieve in order to help the company grow. It will make them feel like they are truly apart of the business and not just an employee. It also means that by making a commitment to themselves they will want to follow through with achieving the goals.
Track & analyze
It’s not enough to keep written or digital notes about the progress of your projects, especially when you’re working with more than one person. The use of digital programs such as Asana and Basecamp will allow everyone to be kept up to speed with the progress of all the company’s projects from start to finish.
While you have the use of online virtual programs that track projects from start to finish, nothing beats the old school weekly progress meeting. It shows that you as the owner care about the progress of every project and the person assigned to it. On the flip, it gives the person assigned to the project the opportunity to openly express any questions or concerns they may have about the project before the deadline approaches. This helps to keep everyone on the same page at all times.
When the team knows there are weekly meetings set for project updates it makes them accountable for their portion of the project, and It also insures they’re holding up their end of the bargain by meeting the personal goals that they set for themselves. When team members know they can have an impact on the business it makes them that more determined to meet their goals.
Okay, so you’re hitting all your goals and everything on your end appears to be perfect. But how do you really know that it’s perfect? This is your opportunity to take the time and ask your client’s if they’re satisfied with the service they’re receiving. If not, it opens the door for you to find out what their true wants and needs are. This eliminates you spending time, money and energy providing something your customers have no use for. You can remove that item from your goals and replace it with something that will increase the value and presence of your business.
Modify & adapt
Remember the goals you set in January may not be the same goals by June. Tweaks are normal and they will happen. These tweaks may stem from customer feedback or maybe a course of action is not working as projected. Therefore modifications to your goals are required and you now must adapt to the changes so that you can continue on the path of achieving your success for the year.