Starting the new year, businessmen establish goals for their businesses to achieve. According to a study performed by Swedbank Institute of Finances among medium and small enterprises, 58% of companies have goals set up for 2017. 26% of businessmen are in the process of defining goals.
Every tenth business has no clear goals to achieve.
Interviewed businessmen admit that they most often involve their employees in the process for defining goals (60%). The situation is completely different in the category of newly-founded businesses – 65% of them do not involve employees in the process. In addition, only 18% of newly-founded companies have individual goals set up for employees. Although this can be explained with a small number of staff, it is nonetheless important for small companies to involve their employees in important decision-making processes to ensure their equal contribution to achieving goals.
Looking at results of the last year, 17% of small and medium companies managed to achieve their business goals. 24% managed to accomplish up to 90% of their goals. 33% of businessmen said they managed to achieve less than they hoped.
«Regardless of the size of the company and its chosen business area – be it an internet store, beauty shop or café – clearly defined goals and tactical steps towards their accomplishment will help grow them grow and develop. Financial results of each company depend on clear goals and the contribution of each employee for their accomplishment,» – explains expert of Swedbank Institute of Finances Elina Zvirbule.
How to establish business goals?
Accurate definition of goals is an important step towards accomplishing anything. Financial experts recommend using the most popular goal-defining methods ‘SMART’ (specific, measurable, assignable, realistic, time-related).
A business goal should be:
Specific – only specific goals are worth aiming for. For example, create a new product sample in January or create a process for customer services online or come up with a special festive menu.
Measurable – because only then will you be able to notice positive changes and tell if you’re goal has been achieved or not. For example – increasing customer satisfaction from 7 to 9.
Assignable – make sure you have everything coordinated with your employees. Make sure your employees have enough resources to accomplish their assigned goals. Resources are people, money, skills, equipment, knowledge, etc.
Realistic – the kind possible to accomplish. Ambitions are just as important. If a goal is set for too far into the future, it will seem hard to accomplish. For example: the goal should be compliant with personnel management strategy to ensure employees are satisfied with work conditions.
Time-related – possible within a specific period of time. It means setting terms for each milestone. Having a timeframe will help maintain motivation and assess priorities.