Time to set your New Year business goals and to set the action plans needed to achieve them
Through the many years of being a dance studio owner I can assure you that setting goals and devising a plan to achieve those goals definitely works. We have had real life application of this and have found it to be invaluable for the growth of our dance studio. What do you have to lose? So, let’s give it a try!
The best goals happen because there is a plan
Goal setting is the process of deciding what you want to accomplish and devising a plan to achieve those desired results. For entrepreneurs, goal setting is an important part of business planning.
For effective goal setting, you need to do more than just decide what you want to do; you also have to work at accomplishing whatever goal you have set. For many dance studio owners, it's the second part of the goal-setting definition that's problematic. They know what they want to do and they're perfectly willing to work on it, but they have trouble creating a plan to get there.
So, the question is where do you start?
Write down each goal on a piece of paper or word document. Under each goal write at least 5 things that you are going to do to try to reach that goal. These will be your action plan activities. You can add more as you proceed. Next make sure that starting the beginning of the year you spend time each week working on one of the action plan activities.
Setting Personal and Business Goals
The same goal-setting formula and strategies that work for business goals will also work for personal goals. The bonus is that applying the strategies used to set business goals will give you greater success in achieving personal goals.
Business goals are typically set on an annual basis and should be aligned with your long-term goals. These goals should be worked into your business plan and, when appropriate, specific areas like sales forecasts.
Throughout the year, you might have weekly, monthly, or quarterly sessions where you review your progress towards the annual goal. Examining results is essential for staying on track when you're working toward achieving a goal.
At the end of each month, you should review what you have accomplished for the month and think about what you would like to achieve on the following month. Preparing a to-do list for the next month is an excellent practice that will help keep you on track.
Whether you prefer to do it at night or in the morning, monthly planning is a highly recommended way to increase your business success. Regularly reviewing your goals and your progress toward achieving them keeps you focused and motivated. Doing this has been a real game changer for me!
Goals You Can Track
One easy way to ensure you accomplish your goals is to follow the SMART acronym, which stands for:
Specific: Rather than, "I want to increase my revenue this year," try, "I want to increase my business revenue by 30% this year."
Measurable: "Increasing sales" or "reducing debt" are measurable goals; "working harder" or "increasing my personal satisfaction" are vague and difficult to measure. Putting measurable goals in writing helps to keep you focused and see how much progress you've made at the end of the defined time period.
Attainable: A goal should be challenging but achievable. However, don’t be bashful about being a bit bold! If you are at 200 students and want to hit 300 that is reasonable with a good plan in place.
Relevant: Goals should be aligned with your long-term plans. If your long-term plan is for your business to attain $500,000 a year in revenue, your short-term goals should directly relate to achieving this.
Time-bound: Without a specific time, frame for your goals, they can't be properly measured. A goal should contain a time limit (e.g., "by the end of the summer I want to increase revenue by 20%").
Effective goal setting begins with a clear understanding of what SMART goals are and an awareness of the process needed to achieve them.
So, what are you waiting for? It’s time to get started. Once you do the magic will begin to happen. The first step is always the biggest and most important one to take.
Here’s to your success!