Articles on Business Strategy

Effective Goal Setting

Written by Stefan Martinovic for Gaebler Ventures

Effective goal setting is essential if you want to see your business strategies succeed. Many great business strategies fail simply because the company was not able to set goals properly.

Setting goals for your business is an important step toward future success.

It is important to have goals for the direction of your business outside of purely monetary gain. By setting goals, you are defining a guideline for the future of your business, and if you set goals effectively, you lay the framework for making those aspirations a reality.

Measuring actual performance against your goals can provide an effective barometer for the performance of your business against desired performance. Not only does goal setting provide an introspective into overall performance, but is also an effective management tool used in businesses of all sizes in all industries.

Setting a specific goal backed by an action plan is vital to effective goal setting in business. Saying you simply want to accomplish something is a fairly hollow statement unless there is a course of events you plan to follow through with in order to accomplish the goal.

This also provides a quantifiable performance measure that will use to gauge your progress against the goal you set for yourself. By setting the performance measure as a specific date or time, you provide a concrete period in which to measure your progress. With a combination of a performance measure and an action plan, you can ensure that goals are more likely to be reached and results can easily be quantified.

The feasibility of goals is another issue that you will encounter as a small business owner. By setting goals that are too easily attainable, you may not be pushing your business to its maximum potential, allowing for wasted potential. This is certainly not a scenario you would want to encounter.

Conversely, by setting very lofty goals, you may be fostering some unrealistic notions and setting yourself up for disappointment. While it is important to be ambitions, striking a healthy balance between ambition and feasibility is important to the effectiveness of goals that you set for your business.

The end result of goal setting in getting results, and as such it is important to put a mechanism in place to measure those results. Generally, business goals are measured by monetary gain, units sold, manpower, or similar metrics. Choosing the right metric with which to gauge yourself can be crucial to the structuring and application of your business goals.

Let us say that your goal is to grow your business, a fairly general goal. How will you measure the growth of the company? Business growth can be measured by profitability, unit sales, or number of employees. By focusing at your specific aims, you can ensure that the goals you set truly reflect what you hope to accomplish in your business endeavors.

By knowing the fundamentals of effective goal setting, you can be sure that the goals you set are effective in spurring the performance of your business and inspiring confidence in your employees in their drive for continuous progress.

Stefan Martinovic has an extensive body of work across the financial services, manufacturing, and retail industries. He is currently pursuing an MBA in Management and Entrepreneurship at The College of William & Mary.

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