Written by, Tracy Budabin
When to do it.
Why to do it.
And is it really that big of a deal?
Each year starts with people talking about what they want to accomplish in the new year; by March, most have given up on their goals. Then they spend a lot of time talking about what they could have accomplished, settling for what they will accomplish, and stating they’ll do better next year. I suggest you choose right here and right now to make this year different! There’s no rule, what so ever, that states the plan has to be set in stone by January 1stor it doesn’t count!
To start, envision where you want to be at the end of the year, then you can break it down into incremental goals to get yourself there. According to a recent Business.com article each goal should be set with a SMART target attached: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, & Time-Based. It’s best to be focused on 2-3 goals at a time. When you increase that, your time and efforts become too spread out and you actually may set yourself up to accomplish less.
When determining your goals, keep the SMART targets in mind and make sure each goal you set checks all 5 boxes.
Specific: Make sure you clearly define what you are wanting to achieve. You need to make sure to state the details: when, where, what, why & who will be responsible for it.
Measurable: This relates, not only to the end goal, but also to the goals along the way. For example, if you want to close 12 deals by the end of the year, your quarterly goal would be 3. Having a specific measure to compare your progress against is important in achieving your end goal, and to staying on track on your route to completion.
Attainable:There’s nothing worse than setting goals you have no way of achieving! Make sure your goal is something you will have to work for, but you can achieve. Believing you can will help you through the tough times and leads to success!
Relevant:Make sure the short-term goals you set strategically contribute to your long-term goal, and make sure all goals are important and necessary.
Time-Based: This might be the most import part! Always have a deadline for each goal that holds you accountable to when it needs to be accomplished. Short-term goal deadlines keep you on track and focused on what is needed to accomplish your larger goals.
As you are defining your yearly goals and your incremental goals, keep in mind as that things will change during the year. Review your yearly plan each month and determine where you are doing well and where you need to focus more time and attention. This plan is a living document, it is not written in stone. If you are achieving your goals too easily, stretch them. If you are truly struggling in an area, seek out advise and knowledge from someone who can help you. Remember that “failing to plan, is planning to fail” (bisiness.com, 2017).
Make this year different: set your plan and live to it!