In his best-selling book “7 Habit of Highly Effective People”, author Steven Covey says that we should “start with the end in mind”. This means that we should have a clear goal and then work backwards from there to work out what strategies and activities we need to put in place to achieve this goal.
From my experience, setting goals and having a process to track your progress against these goals is one of the most important factors that determines your business and personal success. But it’s amazing how many people in business don’t set goals and are just happy (or unhappy in a lot of cases) to stumble from week-to-week.
There is an often quoted study that was conducted on Yale University’s class of 1953. The graduating students were asked how many had written, specific goals for their future. The answer was just 3%. Twenty years later, researchers went back to these students and found that this 3% had accumulated more wealth than the remaining 97% combined! This is a great example of the power of goal setting.
In his book Think & Grow Rich, where Napolean Hill studied the success principles of over 500 highly successful business people, he also highlights the ability to dream big and set goals as the key factor to success. A great quote from the book is “Whatever the mind of man can conceive and believe, it can achieve”.
So grab a piece of paper, divide it into 3 columns and label these 3 Years, 12 Months and 90 Days. Close your eyes and think about what you want your business and life to look like in 3 years time – don’t be afraid to DREAM BIG. What do your ideal customers look like? What will your business premises look like? Where will you be located? How many team members will you have? How will they interact with each other and your customers? What is your relationship like with your family and friends?
Now fill out the sheet with your goals for the next 3 years, your goals for the next 12 months and lastly your specific goals for the coming quarter. Try to be specific – how many new customers, what is the dollar value of your monthly sales, etc. It may help to think in terms of these categories:
- Strategic/Management goals
- Financial goals
- Operational goals
- Team goals
- Marketing goals
- Personal goals
This quick 15-20 minute exercise will provide you with renewed focus and a positive outlook for the months ahead. If you need any help in applying these to your business then feel free to contact us. Now, get ready to kick some goals…