Setting the right goals for your small business in 2019

Pay rise business vector concept. Career ladder climbing, salary increase symbol with businessman climbing.Goals help give us direction and help set us along the right path for our businesses. If you didn’t accomplish all you wanted to last year either with client acquisition or retainment, it could be because you either didn’t set goals at all or you set the wrong ones.

Once you define what your goals are, you can then break them down into smaller steps that can help you to achieve them. Here’s how to get started:

1. Assess the performance of yourself and your team

Who’s on your team? What are they good at and what are they not good at? 2019 won’t work out too well for you if you haven’t fixed the issues that held you back in 2018. Your first goal shouldn’t involve numbers, it should involve your team. Assess and address their capabilities and spot their weaknesses; then involve them in your goal setting process moving forward.

2. Find out who your audience is and what they want

If you still don’t know your audience, you’ll inevitably waste time trying to reach out to the wrong people. Moreover, you’ll also struggle to set the right goals that will allow you to reach the right audience. Once you know who they are, you’ll then know what you need to do to reach that demographic. Don’t shy away from asking for feedback from customers and prospects. Feedback tells you what messaging is best for your audience, and what you can improve or include in your acquisition process to make it even better. The more you know about your audience, the easier it will be to acquire lookalike audiences.

3. Identify your unique selling proposition

Your USP, or your unique selling proposition/point, is what differentiates your business from your competitors. If someone was to ask you randomly what your USP is, would you be able to give them a short, sharp and compelling answer? If you’re instead left grasping or trying to pull something together on the spot, it means you haven’t worked out your USP.

4. Improve your numbers from last year

The aim for any small business should be to increase revenue over the previous year. Goals, especially sales goals, need to be specific and they need to involve numbers. If they don’t, they’ll be too vague and you’ll miss your target. As the year comes to an end, you should compare this year’s revenue with the previous year.

5. Break down your goals into manageable bits

Once you’ve figured out the percentage increase you should implement in the new year, it may look big and intimidating. This is perfectly normal. It’s better to aim high and get close than it is to set a modest goal that doesn’t give you room for growth. To make your goal more manageable, break it down into a series of smaller goals. For example, if your goal is to increase sales by 12 percent, try breaking it down into three percent increases per quarter, or one percent per month.

By setting aside some time to establish your goals for 2019, you’re guaranteed to have a successful year. Take action today, before ball officially drops on 2018!