As the year comes to an end, most businesses began to evaluate where their business has been over the past 12 months and where it is going. These are the reasons why I enjoy this time of the year. It is the time where you get to re-vamp everything – life, career, business; it doesn’t matter. You get to determine what worked and what didn’t. You get to launch something exciting and new that took you all year to prepare. Just don’t forget to plan or you will be saying the same thing next year, “If I only I would have done this” or “I wish I had enough time to do that.” Well don’t worry. I am going to share five S.M.A.R.T. goal tips that will help keep you on track. If you make sure your goals fall into these five categories, you will be on your way to a thriving life and/or business in the upcoming year.
SPECIFIC – First things first – make your goal specific. Divulge the most detailed aspects of your goals. Be clear and concise. No ambiguous details allowed. The easiest way to make them specific is to answer the five “W” questions: (1) who will be involved; (2) what is the end result of your purpose or mission; (3) where will the goals take place; (4) why are these goals so important and (5) which requirements are necessary to or which constraints are hindering you from achieving these goals.
MEASURABLE – The second category is to determine a measurable point of that will tell you that you have reached success. This step usually answers the three “H” questions: (1) how much income do I want to make or how much will it cost; (2) how many new clients do I need to get or how many new products do I need to create and (3) how will I know when I have accomplished my goal. My advice is to set a real number that you know and believe you can hit in the time frame you have set.
ACHIEVABLE / ATTAINABLE – The third category is that the goal much be in arms reach. It cannot be so big and so extreme that it is impossible to accomplish. This is where you will answer the question of how will I achieve this goal. Find out what it takes and map out how you will get there. Is it really out of reach or does your plan need some re-adjusting?
REALISTIC – Next determine how realistic your goals are. Do they make sense or are they farfetched? Have the previous criteria been assessed appropriately? Make sure they are believable even with a hint of discomfort. This will help you in getting others onboard to help you reach that goal. It will also help you validate why you are doing whatever it is that you do.
TIME-BASED – And finally, set a time frame to meet these goals. There is nothing worse than setting a goal and then not establishing a time frame to achieve it. Goals that are not time-based are simply desires. They are merely needs, requests and wishes. Set your big goal and then break it down into smaller goals with shorter time frames to achieve them. The smaller the time frame to achieve the goal, the less overwhelmed you will feel. This will also help you with determining if the goals are in fact realistic and achievable (see the previous two categories).
Now that you have made certain that your goals are S.M.A.R.T., start implementing them!
We would love to hear from you. Tell us if you have you set your goals for the upcoming year? How has this article helped you establish clearer goals?
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