If you do then you probably need a plan
As business owners we are told we must have business goals and we have to achieve these goals, and that we have failed if we don’t achieve them.
But how realistic are our goals? For me the piece I most often find missing is the plan to achieve these goals.
It’s all very well setting yourself a goal, but is it actually achievable? And I’m not talking stretch goals here. I mean the goals where you say you can do something in 12 months, but based on your current performance it will actually take 16 months. Now you can change the goal to achieve this in 16 months, or you have to change what/ how you work. Again both valid options. But what isn’t valid is saying “I will achieve it in 12 months but I won’t change how I work/ what I do”. This means you have set yourself a goal that you can’t possibly achieve. And unfortunately we live in a culture where failure is criticised. This isn’t a failure of the goal. This is a failure of the planning process that should be part of the goal setting process.
In so many cases I see people talk about how to set goals, but with no mention of the planning process that will allow a business to actually achieve those goals with a realistic amount of time or resources.
So what happened to the goals you set yourself for last year? Did you achieve them? If you didn’t instead of beating yourself up for not achieving them why not look at WHY you didn’t achieve them. And when did you realise you wouldn’t achieve them?
If you only visit your goals every December – in order to set next years goals and review last years then it might come as a surprise that you haven’t achieved your goals. But if you have a plan to achieve each of your goals you should have a regular review to see how you are doing against your road map and you can see how close you are to achieving the goal, or if you are starting to edge ahead, or fall behind what you have said you will achieve.
So this year when you’re setting your goals why not spend some time drawing up a plan that will break down the goal in to a realistic plan detailing what you’ll do every day/ week/ month and how often you’ll check your progress against this plan and also how you’ll measure success against the plan. That way your goals will actually be things that you’ve achieved this year, instead of a piece of paper languishing in a file or a drawer, that aren’t going to help your business or you achieve what you want to this year.
so what goals are you setting this year? and will you achieve them?
I was contacted this week by a (self proclaimed) eminent authority on social media. He contacted me by email inviting me to attend one of his “world renowned” training courses. Nothing wrong so far, except it was sent with an email address along the lines of firstname.lastname@example.org
The information about the course was all on an eventbrite page. Again nothing wrong with that, but I would expect a link to the home page of the training provider, which was conspicuously absent.
So I googled this person. Lots of profiles on lots of platforms, although very few referring to his social media background, but no website that I could see. So I emailed saying I’d like some more information and where was the website so that I could see what other services were available etc. The response was that his business didn’t need a website!
Now in some ways I agree with that belief. There are some businesses that don’t need a website, but they do need a business page somewhere online – that could be a facebook page, a LinkedIn Business page, but for me it always feels more professional if there is, as a minimum, a home page with some details about the business and what it does.
The thing that concerned me most was the act that this person was happy for me to spend my money with his business, by attending a training course, but he wasn’t prepared to invest the very small amount of money needed to give him a business email address.
It takes as little as £5 for 2 years to buy a domain name, which will allow you to have a business email address, even if you don’t set up the associated web page. And what impression am I left with about his person who takes so little pride in their business that they won’t invest anything into it?
If this person had been a plumber, or local odd job man I may not have had the same reaction, although for so little investment I think it’s a missed opportunity if they don’t for any business and hugely damaging to a brand, but for a company trying to sell to a professional business audience, for me it’s an absolute cardinal business sin. So I’m not attending his course.
Do you agree? And have you come across businesses doing the same thing? have you had a lovely chat with someone at a networking meeting only to be presented with a card with a generic ISP address on it?