Tips for Setting SMART Goals for Your Business Plan: Part 1 – Specific
Tips for Setting SMART Goals for Your Business Plan: Part 2 – Measurable
Tips for Setting SMART Goals for Your Business Plan: Part 3 – Achievable
Tips for Setting SMART Goals for Your Business Plan: Part 4 – Relevant
Tips for Setting SMART Goals for Your Business Plan: Part 5 – Time-Based
Tips for Setting SMART Goals for Your Business Plan: Part 6 – Creating the Final SMART Goal
This article breaks down the 3rd part of SMART goal setting, along with tips to help complete the section and apply it to your business planning. There is a downloadable template included to help in creating your achievable goals.
Most business owners are aware of how important a business plan is for the success of their businesses. It lays out the different goals that the business aims to achieve, along with the plan for achieving those specific goals. Both in our personal lives and in business, it is essential to have clear objectives! Without goals we are not truly in charge of the direction we are heading, and usually end up drifting haphazardly hoping not to run into any problems that will set us back from success – which it’s also hard to measure success without having set goals to accomplish! So, what is one of the best ways to set a business goal, you may be asking? Well, we think it’s a smart idea to set SMART goals! These are goals that are specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-based. Let’s take a further look at what the 3rd part of SMART goal setting is, along with Attainable tips to help.
When setting the goals for your business, it is important that they are attainable. If you believe for yourself that the company will be able to complete the objectives you are putting forth, it is more likely you will attain them. While it is good to dream BIG and reach for the stars, it is also important to remember to keep one foot planted firmly on the ground in reality. Challenge yourself and your business, however avoid setting unreachable business goals that may set you up for failure before you have even begun.
Business objectives are meant to inspire motivation, not discouragement.Unattainable goals can be disheartening and are more likely to have people quit working towards them before even starting. It is essential that you set business goals for yourself and more importantly that you believe you can accomplish them. Here are 4 great questions to answer when setting out the Achievable component of your SMART business goals:
1. Finances: Do you have sufficient financing to complete your objective? This would involve any operating costs and expenses that would be involved in working towards your goal. It is important to consider the funding you will need for all the different aspects involved in this business achievement. Consider the cost of the employees that will be involved, the time spent, as well as any materials and supplies they will need.
2. Personnel: Do you have enough personnel to accomplish your goal? Do you have the right personnel with adequate abilities and skills? This is where you need to consider how many people should be working towards the goal, as well as what specific skills are required. There are some goals that may require training or hiring to encompass all of the talent you will require to hit your targets.
3. Time: Have you given enough time to reach your objective? Here you are assessing if the timeline you have set for your specific goal is realistic without giving too much room for those working on it to get comfortable; growth happens with some discomfort! Remember, more time spent also means more money spent. While it can be difficult trying to establish appropriate timing to achieve your objectives, especially if it is in a new or unknown area of business for you, don’t worry – this question will get easier with time.
4. Resources: What other resources will you need to achieve your goal? This is where you need to think of all the details of what will be required to hit your target. Consider the equipment, software, supplies, technology, and workspace that will be essential in reaching your objective.
Let’s say a company is looking to launch a new mobile app for their website by the end of their 2nd Quarter. Here is what each answer to the questions above could look like:
1. Finances: The budget for developing the mobile app is $150,000. This would include $120,000 in wages for the team to develop, design, and market the software to our customers. $10,000 will be used for any new equipment, supplies, or software that is required to ready the application. $20,000 will be spent in basic operational costs. We will not have to consider all operational costs for the business, as we have other divisions working out of the same building working on other projects that are generating income.
2. Personnel: Software development, design, and marketing teams will all need to be involved. We currently have enough personnel in each team that are dedicated and motivated to working on this mobile app launch. They are confident they have the right amount of people working on the project with the skills to create the mobile app and market it to our customers. These teams have also worked with each other previously and understand the value in teamwork.
3. Time: I am confident in allowing 6 months to develop this application, and the teams involved have also assured me they are able to achieve this target. Marketing was originally concerned about the time allotted (1 month) to introduce the app to our new customers, however, working alongside the software developer and designers they will be able to begin working on marketing strategies well before the production is complete.
4. Resources: We currently have the workspace required for the teams to work on this application. The software developers will need new software to support the creation of the mobile application. We are also investing in X3 mobile devices to allow them to work on the different views that are available for the application on different devices. Each team has provided me with a list of the supplies they will need to complete their part, and we have allotted a bit extra in the budget to accommodate unforeseen supplies, equipment, or software that may be required.
Are Your Business Goals SMART?
Goal setting can be fun! With the right budget, personnel, timeline and understanding of the resources you may need, you will set a road map to achieve your business objectives. Having a plan set out will also empower you to keep moving forward and seek resolution when you run into the bumps in the road – which will happen! Now that you have a better understanding of the Achievable aspects of SMART goal setting, the question left to ask is: “Are your business goals Achievable?”
As this is only the 3rd step of 6 in SMART goal setting, we think it would be a smart idea to check out the next part in this series: “Tips for Setting SMART Goals for Your Business Plan: Part 4 – Relevant”.