Goals are important in business for keeping your and your employees motivated. They can also encourage you to keep improving your business so that you don’t become complacent. However, in order to achieve these results, you need to make sure that you’re setting effective goals. If the boundaries aren’t clear enough or the goals aren’t realistic enough, you’ll be less inclined to chase these goals. Below are just a few tips for setting goals in business.
Make sure goals are quantifiable
It’s important that any goals you set aren’t too vague. For instance, vowing to ‘increase sales’ of a certain product is not a quantifiable goal. Instead, aim to hit a specific sales figure by a certain date. This is much more likely to motivate you and your team and it will give you a better idea of whether you are successful or not at meeting your goal.
Be realistic of what you can achieve
Unrealistic goals are likely to demotivate you and your team instead of providing motivation. You and your team will only end up overworking yourselves – risking burnout without any hope of success. Consequently, you should always try to be realistic about what you can achieve. Use past performance figures to work out exactly what can be achieved so that you’re not being overly ambitious.
Monitor your progress
When working towards your goals it can often be encouraging to monitor one’s progress so that you can see how far you’ve come and how far you’ve still got to go. There is software out there that can provide a visualisation of your OKR. This could allow you to easily measure your progress in real-time. Alternatively, you may prefer to simply use old skool diaries and notes to record your progress.
Don’t move the goalposts
Once a goal has been set, it’s important to not move the goalposts. Once you start doing this, your staff will no longer know whether a goal is worth pursuing. It’s particularly important not to make a goal more challenging than it already is – bringing forward a deadline or raising the goal figure at the last moment could make your staff feel cheated. Keep the goalposts where they are so that your staff feel confident enough to chase them.
Set yourself rewards
If you meet your goal, there should be some kind of reward for doing so. This could be anything from a monetary bonus to a week off. Knowing that there is a reward at the end will spur you on to succeed. You may want to talk to your employees to find out exactly what kind of rewards motivate them so that you can cater individual rewards to them. Make sure to set yourself rewards that don’t undo the achievements of your goals. For instance, if your goal is to make a certain amount of revenue – don’t then fritter away all this money on a personal reward.