Lately, I find myself thinking about goals a lot. Maybe it’s because I manage a lot of tasks and some days, though I’ve been busy all day, I’m not sure what I have accomplished. Perhaps it is because I’ve never been good at putting substance around my goals.
Sure, I want to be a good dad, husband, and grandfather and while they are goals, they’re not something I can strategically accomplish. Creating a successful business certainly sounds like a goal – yet it is easy to get lost when trying to create the plan that makes it reality.
I don’t recall how often I’ve heard the presentation on using the format of goal setting called SMART though I know it has been too many times to remember. If you are not familiar with it, I’ll share an overview here. If, like me, you’ve heard about it more than once, then allow me to encourage you to give it a try. In this case, SMART is an acronym that goes like this:
||Your goal must be SPECIFIC. A lofty goal sounds good but if you can’t define it easily, it’s more of a dream or idea than it is a goal.
||Your goal must be MEASUREABLE. Increasing revenue is something we all want but you need to quantify it by some number, whether that be dollars or percentage. Otherwise, an extra $1 in revenue can be seen as successfully achieving the goal.
||Your goal must be ATTAINABLE. I’d like to lose 25 pounds. Is it attainable? At my current weight, absolutely! My wife would have serious health issues if she lost 25 pounds – so just because a goal is attainable for one doesn’t mean it is for everyone.
||Your goal must be REALISTIC. Face it, if you are in the business of making buggy whips, increasing sales in 2018 by an additional $100,000 likely is not REALISTIC. However, if you just introduced the hottest and in demand product ever seen, a $100,000 goal may be a gross understatement so you have to keep it real.
||Your goal must be TIME-SENSITIVE or TIME-BOUND. You need to set a time period for accomplishing your goal so you know whether or not you made it. If you think it will take six months, then you will design a plan for accomplishing the goal in six months. If you fail to accomplish the goal in that time period, you need to evaluate whether it is attainable and realistic and if it is, figure out what went wrong and make a new plan.
Hopefully you have noticed that these elements do not work independently of one another. To be successful at making your goals reality, you have to create a plan that incorporates each one of these.
Make 2018 your best and most successful year yet by setting – and attaining – your goals!