As a small business, setting goals is always beneficial. Have a detailed strategy that outlines milestones and ways in which you’ll measure performance and progress. From improving marketing reach, cutting expenses or getting your business organized, these tips will help you triumph in all your small business goals.
Know What Your Strategy Is Before Setting Your Small Business Goals
While planning your small business goals for the year, it is key to keep the big picture in mind. This will help keep you strategically focused and on track with your goals. According to London Business School professor Elsbeth Johnson, important strategic business questions fall into four major categories
- The purpose of your organization is your: Mission
- What you offer to customers is your: Value
- What your company offers to your business and shareholders is your: Profitability
- How your company behaves internally towards other team members and externally toward customers and shareholders is your: Policy
It will be helpful for your small business to use these general strategic areas as a template for generating more specific strategies and tactical plans. If your goal for the year is to organize your business, you may want to ask yourself these three “How can we better organize” questions:
- How can we better organize our marketing campaigns to generate more leads?
- How can we better organize our sales process to generate more revenue?
- How can we better organize our workflow, digital files, and physical workspace to improve productivity and cut costs?
Asking these questions will better guide your organizational planning and can help ensure that your organizing activity makes a beneficial difference for your productivity, business, and your bottom line.
Working as a Team
You shouldn’t always brainstorm by yourself. Input from areas such as marketing, sales, customer service, project management, and IT will make you much more informed and give you relevant information.
Management professional Jonathan Mosley recommends taking four steps on intaking information, in an organized manner:
- Make clear those attending your meetings know and understand its impact on your company’s performance.
- Write an agenda for each meeting, make sure those attending see it prior to the meeting.
- Set a designated chair run each meeting, a designated scribe record notes, and a designated timekeeper to advise the chair when agenda items are running over budgeted time.
- Keep meetings focused by planning more than one meeting.
Following this will help you get information from your team members in an organized, productive, actionable way.
Setting Business Priorities
When focusing on specific parts of your business, it’s crucial to strategize your priorities. Focus on activities that improve your business performance. Leading marketing expert Jay Abraham has three major ways to grow any business:
- Increase the number of prospects you reach who become customers
- Increase the average amount your customers spend per transaction
- Increase the average number of times your customers buy from you
Think about your yearly goals, how can they be fine-tuned to these three key marketing and sales areas? By thinking about your business’s bottom line you ensure that you’re prioritizing moving your business forward. However, it’s equally important to focus your goals on these areas as well:
- Increasing customer satisfaction
- Improving operations efficiency
- Saving costs
Improving in these areas can have a large impact on your business’ bottom line. They will help you save costs and grow the value of your customers.
Following Progress and Planning Tasks
If it’s not planned, it doesn’t get done. In order to achieve your goals, it’s crucial to organize your team’s schedule so that you are able to perform relevant tasks. The best way to do this is to use project management software to create, delegate, and schedule tasks and to track progress. Assign someone as project leader to monitor progress on tasks and send out reminders if needed. Send updates on project progress, and hold meetings to review progress.
Having goals such as marketing, sales, and project management can help you stay focused on practical objectives. Input from your whole team is crucial and will give you insight into what goals to pursue and how to go about pursuing them. Priorities help you focus your time and energy on improvements that will make a positive impact on your business. Scheduling tasks and measuring progress will ensure that your plans get done. These steps will help you meet your small business goals and ensure an efficient and profitable year.
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