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4 Rules for Setting Achievable Business Goals


There are 4 rules you don't want to ignore when it comes to setting business goals. Following them can help make the difference between success and failure. Here are the rules for setting achievable business goals.

Begin with a Vision

You've heard it over and over again, but it's absolutely true when it comes to setting your business goals: If you don't know where your target is, you're bound to miss every time. What is your target? What do you hope to achieve with your business? What is your vision? Some look to their religious convictions, or the Bible for help. Some build upon the vision set by others, such as a previous generation, extended family, spouse, franchise or business mentor. When you know your vision, write it down using just a few sentences. Keep it simple so that anyone can understand where you're headed.

Plan Your Strategy

Keeping your vision in mind, you'll want to craft a carefully worked out plan to achieve your business goals. This is known as your strategy, and it's the big picture of how you plan to be successful. This can be a difficult step for some who find it hard to look 1, 3 and 5 years down the road. It's necessary to look ahead while working on the daily grind of running your business. Otherwise, you can get sidetracked easily, or worse, head down the wrong road. For help with your strategy, visit your library, or order used books that profile business owners who have achieved success in your line of work. Be careful to not follow strategies that are not realistic for the average entrepreneur, and that promise wealth based on get-rich schemes.

Develop Tactics

You need to think through the actions needed to execute your strategy, known as tactics. This can be a painstaking process if you enjoy focusing on the big picture. It's necessary if you ever want to see the overall vision realized. One way that you can develop tactics for your business goals is to create tasks based on the following categories.

  • Marketing
  • Sales
  • Administrative
  • Finances
  • Customer Service or Client Relations
  • Service(s)
  • Product(s)
  • Miscellaneous

Next to each task, make two columns for two dates: the date you plan to complete the task, and the date you actually complete it.

Be Accountable

It's not enough just to set your business goals. You need to work diligently to accomplish them. When you own your own business , you have no oversight from a boss. You're it, and you have to make sure that you're getting the job done because no one else will. One way that you can make sure that you're on the right track and actually achieving the goals you've set is to be accountable to someone else. You can ask someone you know and trust to check that you're accomplishing your goals. Start with your spouse. If that's not an option, try a close friend, a former colleague, another small business owner, entrepreneur or member of a support group or mastermind. Ask if they would be willing to receive a call or email from you weekly, bi-weekly, monthly or quarterly to confirm that you've completed your tasks. They may even be able to help you problem solve issues when you face challenges.

Without business goals, your time as a business owner may be short-lived. You must plan your strategy, develop tactics and be accountable to someone if you hope to do well.

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