What are your New Year’s resolutions? January always gives us an opportunity to re-evaluate our goals and think about what we want to achieve in the months ahead.
Maybe this will be the year you take that dream holiday, start a healthier lifestyle, create more time for yourself or climb that mountain you’ve always wanted to tackle?
Personal goals are fantastic for reminding us what matters most and giving us something tangible to work towards – and business goals are no different.
Here at Fresh Clarity, we frequently talk to business owners about why they’re not happy with their business. When we drill down into the reasons, we often discover that they haven’t set any goals and therefore feel they aren’t achieving anything.
Follow our top tips to make sure your New Year’s business resolutions have the best chance of becoming a reality this year.
When setting your business goals, think carefully about what really matters to you. You’ll have a much better chance of achieving it if it’s something you’re really invested in.
Most business owners we work with set goals focussed around time, money or peace of mind. For example, they might want to increase turnover, improve profitability or cashflow, or reduce their working hours.
Fresh Clarity work exclusively with owner-managed businesses, so we can help you drill down into these goals and why they’re personal to you.
Make a plan
There’s no magic formula to goal setting; it’s essentially writing down what you want to achieve. Using a tried-and-tested methodology like SMART goals can also help you structure your goals in a clear and measurable way, but setting goals is just one step in the process.
To achieve them, you need a plan. Without one, it’s likely that this time next year, you won’t have reached your goal. As the years tick by, you could begin to feel despondent, while your business feels like a chain around your neck.
Anything is possible, but when you’re setting business goals it’s important to ensure you don’t set yourself up to fail. Once you have a goal in mind, work backwards to create a plan of the steps and actions needed to achieve it.
Through this process, you might discover that you can’t realistically achieve it the time-frame you’ve set, but that doesn’t mean it’s impossible. It just means you may need to make some adjustments.
For example, you need more money to achieve your goal, and if so, you need a plan for how you’re going to find those funds.
You have a far greater chance of achieving your goals if there’s someone holding you accountable for them.
Often, business owners rely on friends or family to do this. But friends and family are more likely to try and protect your feelings than holding you to account for not doing what you planned to do.
Ideally, you need someone independent who can give a bit of ‘tough love’ when needed and keep you firmly on track.
Business owners shoulder a lot of responsibility for making things happen, but that doesn’t mean you have to do it alone.
Many people we talk to are unhappy with their business because they’re not able to take a proper salary or feel stressed by working long hours. They get so consumed by day-to-day tasks that they easily lose control of the bigger picture.
Whether it’s fear of failure, feeling overwhelmed or not knowing how to make the changes needed, having the right support in place to guide you can make all the difference.