KEY #1- BE SPECIFIC
The first key to creating a successful goal is making it as specific as possible! The vaguer the goal, the less likely you are to check it off your list (or maybe you’ll decide to add it to next year’s list). Making specific goals enables you to hone in on what exactly you are aiming to accomplish. These goals can be long or short term, personal or career oriented, but all goals, no matter the reasoning, have been proven to improve performance, increase motivation to achieve them, and boost self-confidence, pride and satisfaction levels. You remember in elementary school when your teachers would say “I’m not sure what you’re asking for, be more specific,” well we are pretty sure that was preparation for goal setting (or at least we would like to think so)! Here is an example of a non-specific goal, and what you can alter to turn it into a specific one.
*Non-specific goal: I will obtain new clients this year.
*Specific goal: I will obtain a minimum of 12 new clients in 2018.
KEY #2- BE MEASURABLE
Ensuring your goals are measurable will help aid you with tracking your progress and even setting a timeline for completion! The first step would be breaking down your goal into measurable elements. Finding that task hard to do? Well, ask yourself the following question and then answer it;
Q: How will I know when I achieved my goal?
A: I will have achieved this goal when I sign on at least one client each month.
The measurable element in this example would be the number of clients you obtain on a monthly basis, although you only need one client to meet your goal for the month.
After identifying the measurable element, you can then create a timeline for tracking your progress which can be done weekly, monthly, quarterly, or annually. In this example, following a monthly timeline will would seem the most efficient. Upon obtaining a new client, and indication on your timeline can be made showing you've hit your target for the month. What good does setting goals do, if you can't measure your success!?
*Measurable goal: Progress will be measured based on me obtaining at least one new client a month.
KEY #3- BE ATTAINABLE
Would you fly to the moon if you were responsible for piloting the ship and was not taught how to? In order to get to the moon, you first have to complete the necessary steps it takes to get there. Maybe flying to the moon isn’t a goal of yours, but obtaining new clients for your business is. It is easy to say “I want more clients,” but what steps do you have in place to make this goal attainable? Some of these steps may include;
Asking your current clients to make referrals
Hosting networking events in order to obtain new leads
Attending different networking events around the community
Implementing new marketing strategies or campaigns
Whatever the steps may be, be sure to stay focused on the bigger picture!
*Attainable goal: In order to gain new clients I will attend networking events, ask current clients for referrals and launch new marketing efforts to increase company awareness
KEY #4- BE RELEVANT
We believe the most important thing to consider as you partake on your goal setting journey, is thinking about why your goals are important to you and how they tie into your key responsibilities. Your goals must matter and be relevant to what you are aiming to accomplish, because the more relevance they have, the more success you will have with achieving them. The following questions may aid with the goal making process:
Q: What are the benefits and rewards of you achieving your goals?
Q: What will make you stay committed to this goal in the long run?
Understanding the true meaning/purpose/essence of you're aiming to accomplish will help you create goals that are the most beneficial to you.
KEY #5- BE TIME-BOUND
When creating your goals, it is best to set deadlines for which you aim to complete them. According to blog writer Aric Mitchell, there are 6 benefits of what setting deadlines aids with, which include;
1. Channeling your enthusiasm
2. Preparing you for what you need to do
3. Making you more creative about finding solutions
4. Keeping others on task and encouraging teamwork
5. Breaking down tasks and keeping well organized
6. Keeping you from being lazy while also helping you rejuvenate
Who knew setting deadlines could have such an impact on other areas of life! Be sure to keep these benefits in mind when sitting down to map out short/long term goals. Whether your goal is for your
personal life or for work, make sure you achieve it by setting a deadline for yourself.
If you think about it, if no deadlines were ever set, would we have any of the luxuries we are so used to today?!
Time-Bound Goal: I will have at least 1 new client each month, to reach my minimum goal of 12 clients for 2018.
Remember the “SMART-er” you make your goal, the more likely you are to achieve it!