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Grow Your Business with Annual Company Goals, Part 1: Setting SMART Goals
In this two-part series, we’ll look at how to set and accomplish SMART goals for your company.
Are small businesses properly nurturing their company goals and objectives?
“More than 80% of small business owners admit they don't give enough attention to achieving goals; 77% of these owners have yet to achieve their dreams for their company.” (Staples Small Business Survey, 2010).
Think there’s a correlation between the two? We do.
These statistics are an excellent demonstration of the importance of setting, implementing, and tracking annual business goals (and what can happen when you don’t). It’s why Kinesis works with our clients to set SMART goals (Specific, Measureable, Attainable, Realistic, and Timely) during our annual strategic planning meetings, and then break these down into bite-size, quarterly objectives that get implemented. We hold our clients accountable through weekly meetings with a key point person in the company.
Be specific and reasonable when setting goals.
Annual goals are a road map for your business. Without them, the future of your company is left to chance.
When you set your goals, make them SMART and be clear as to what you want to achieve and by when. For example, a SMART goal might be to “Increase overall top-line revenue by 12% by12/31/2012.”
We recommend setting no more than 5 overarching SMART goals for your company in a 12-month period. These goals should be in alignment with your mission and core values.
They should be attainable not only from leadership’s perspective, but also for those who will be responsible for attaining them. Instead of creating a top-down initiative, try enlisting your team to contribute. Listen and incorporate their feedback. Enthusiastic buy-in and participation from your employees will take your company further, faster.
Eat your whale one bite at a time.
The best way to set your company up for success is to break each goal into discrete quarterly and monthly objectives with specific deadlines for each. Assign one person to own each goal – at the end of the day, they hold the ultimate accountability for moving it forward, and can motivate the team. Identify and allocate the resources, time, and funds you'll need to invest to attain your initiatives.
In Part 2, we will delve into measuring your goals and meeting your milestones. Creating your goals is one thing; actually achieving them is a whole different ballgame.