The practice of goal setting is a key component of business success. Your business must have strategic and operational goals in order to know where you want your business to go and how you want it to get there. The goals for you and your business should be SMART:
S = Specific
M = Measurable
A = Attainable
R = Realistic
T = Timely or Time Sensitive
As you look at each goal for your business you should be evaluating if that goal is a SMART goal.
Ensure your goals are very specific. What are you going to do, when are you going to do it, and how will it get done.
If a goal can’t be measured, it can’t be managed!
Goals should be a stretch, but within your reach. If you pick a goal that is too unrealistic you will most likely give up on it once you realize your chance of success is slim. However, if you pick a goal that is a stretch for you, but still attainable, as you make progress you’ll find yourself becoming more committed to reaching that goal.
Goes hand in hand with attainable. Your goal needs to be realistic to your business, and your own skill set. I’d love to start a software company that puts Microsoft out of business, but that’s probably not very realistic considering I have no experience coding software.
or Time Sensitive:
You need to give yourself a timeline for achieving your goal. It could be next week, next year, next month, or next year but you need a time where you can assesses whether you goal was achieved or not. Without a time limit your sense of urgency to get things done will wane and your chances of attaining your goal will be slim. Make sure your spreadsheet good practice is on point here and keep track of these things!
of a good SMART GOAL:
I’ll use myself and this blog as an example. If I were setting a SMART Goal for this blog it may go something like this:
I will post at least once a day this week, and increase my RSS feeds 10% by Sunday September 13, 2008. This will be accomplished by doing nightly research for post topics, writing at least 1 hour each day, and promoting the blog on blog community sites such as MyBlogLog.com. Also I will be adding a RSS sign up button to the bottom of each post I make encouraging people to sign up. This will help drive traffic to my site and make sponsorships I am offering more valuable, and get more visibility into my consulting services.
Specific: I am spelling out what I want to achieve, when I want to achieve it, and why.
Measurable: There are clear metrics. One post per day, and 10% increase in RSS Readers
Attainable: Writing one post a day is certainly attainable. However I do have a busy weekend planned, so I will need to make sure I have content for Sat/Sun. The 10% gain in RSS is a stretch, but I believe it’s attainable.
Realistic: I have set as a goal is out of my skill set or so over the top I have no chance at success
Timely or Time Sensitive: I have a deadline of September 13, 2019
So there you have it, a SMART goal for this blog and hopefully an example that illustrates what SMART goals are about and how they can help your business. I’ll report back on how I did with my SMART goal next week.