Reach Your Goals in 2012-Three Simple Steps
posted by Bob Voss (firstname.lastname@example.org)
In my last post I discussed the need for small business owners (bizowners) to set goals. From experience I know that most bizowners have difficulty with setting and reaching goals. I think the main reason for this trouble is that, because bizowners are responsible for everything, day to day things just keep getting in the way. Remember the old saying: “When you’re up to your neck in alligators, it’s easy to forget that the initial objective was to drain the swamp!” This is what bizowners are facing all the time. We all spend so much energy each day just trying to survive; we forget why we started the business in the first place.
So let’s suppose you heeded my advice and set at least one major goal for the business to achieve in 2012. How can you make sure you will achieve the goal by the end of this year? Let me give you three simple steps to help you reach the goals you set.
Step #1: Make sure the goal is realistic and can be broken down into smaller parts. Having a goal that you want to increase sales in 2012 is not a good goal. Stating that you want to increase sales by 20% in 2012 is much better because the goal is specific and measurable. This goal can be broken down to measurable units by time (each month, each week, and each day), and what needs to happen in each time period.
Step #2: Make sure you keep the goal in front of you each day and make sure you say the goal aloud each day. How long does it take to do this, 30 seconds, one minute? Each day is the key. Goals must become habits and this is the first major habit of goal setting. Ask yourself, what do I need to accomplish today, to meet my goal for 2012?
Step #3: Break down the larger goal into measurable units that include both action items and a timeline. In the goal above, one way of breaking it down would be to set smaller monthly goals. For example, the small goal might be to increase January 2012 sales by 20% over last year. The actions I need to take to accomplish this might be spend two hours each Thursday morning going door to door to prospect for new business. Or the action might be to call 30 new prospects each week, or if you’re an introvert, you might decide to identify 30 new prospects and e-mail them information on your products or services each week.
These three simple steps make all the difference in the world when it comes to goals. One thing that also should be added to your goals is your reward for reaching the goal! Adding a reward to the goal in step #1 also is a big incentive that helps you to focus on the goal each day. Make these three steps a habit and at the end 2012 you might find that for once, you really were able to “drain the swamp”!