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How to set goals for your business

April 23, 2024
How to set goals for your business

As the year comes to a close, many of us are starting to plan what we want to achieve in 2023.

However, for both startups and established company owners alike, it can sometimes be difficult to work out how to set goals for your business, and make them attainable and worthwhile.

Setting professional goals is a coveted skill, and it’s not a process that should be rushed or done flippantly.

Setting goals for your business, and for yourself, brings multiple benefits.

Having clear targets provides a sense of focus and purpose, helps you steer and define the direction of your company, and keeps you and your team feeling motivated and inspired.

Setting goals also provides a way of tracking progress and keeping yourself accountable. For instance, if you don’t manage to achieve your 2023 goals by the end of next year, you’ll know straight away that something went wrong somewhere.  

So, what are you waiting for?

Don’t wait until January to create your plan for success. Check out our expert tips and start taking your company to the next level now.

Here are five ways to create measurable, effective and powerful goals for your business.

1) Complete a SWOT analysis  

Before you even start setting your list of goals for your business, you first need to consider what the strengths and weaknesses of your company are, what opportunities you see for yourself in the future, and what threats could possibly dampen your progress.  

To do this, start by looking back on 2022 and think about where you achieved success, what you struggled with, what you could do better and where you hope to be in 12 months' time.

Once you know which areas of your business need to be improved, you can start to consider what you think you can realistically achieve in the next few months, the next year, and the years beyond that.

Think about what will really drive your business and make a difference to your results. Every company is different and your goals should be entirely tailored to you.  

2) Be specific about your goals

It might seem more tedious and time consuming than making more general goals, but being specific with your ambitions is crucial.

The more time you spend seriously thinking about your goals, the more likely it is that you will actually achieve them.  

Think about the big picture, and the finer details.  

Write down all your goals, and describe them at length until you can clearly visualise them in your head. For instance, if you want to grow your profits, set an exact amount or percentage that you want to increase them by.

Next, consider what you need to do to get to this figure, and how long you think it will take.

3) Set clear deadlines  

Similar to the above, your deadlines for each goal shouldn’t be rough estimations.

Set yourself a fixed roadmap and follow it strictly. This roadmap should include how much progress you expect to make throughout the year, and the specific dates when you expect to reach each milestone.

Deadlines help you stay committed and driven, and they don’t give you any room to put off doing tasks until next week, or even the month after.  

A clear roadmap will keep you and all your team members accountable, and provide a clear way of tracking your progress as each month passes.  

This plan can take the form of a vision board, a timeline or a calendar with all your set activities, events and milestones clearly marked.  

Once you have completed it, put it somewhere in your office or work place where you will see it every day.  

4) Meet with your team regularly

Although home and remote working are still continuing to trend across the world, sometimes catching up with the rest of your team in person can be the most effective way to set goals.

Discussing what you want to achieve as a business with the rest of your colleagues is likely to provide real clarity, and gaining other perspectives is often an effective way of sparking new ideas.

In-person meetings also let you assess how close you are to achieving your goals together, and work out what is and what isn’t working in your business, and finally what needs to change in order for you to achieve the results you want.  

5) Remain dedicated and determined

Just like with personal goals to lose weight or get fitter, your professional goals can only be achieved with determination and commitment.  

Once you have set your goals, you need to stick to them.

You can’t give up and lower your expectations just because the first few months don’t go as well as you hoped.

Relish every challenge, accept that no journey is ever perfect, and remain enthusiastic and full of positive energy through every step of the way.

Want more information about how to set goals for your business? Joining Cloud Spaces lets you work alongside the most talented creatives, attend informative events and talks, and connect with other local entrepreneurs who might inspire your next big project.

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