Charting My Course

Working with professional service providers and small business owners who want to do a better job
marketing themselves and their services.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Setting SMART Goals

Now is the time of year when everyone is thinking about setting their goals for the year. Some people want to lose weight, make more money, increase their business. We have to be clear on what we want to go in order to have any chance of getting there. A goal is not the same as a dream. "I want to lose weight " is a dream. "Join a gym and work out 3 times per week" is a goal.

A goal must be:

- Specific - What? Why? How?
- Measurable - How will you know your goal is accomplished?
- Action oriented - Are there specific actions you can take to reach your goal?
- Realistic - Do you truly believe this goal can be accomplished?
- Time based - What is your timeframe for accomplishing your goal?

Another great exercise is to write down your goals as if they have already happened. Think about what your life would look like at the end of this year if you accomplished all your goals. For example: I make $150K a year, I am at my ideal weight, I have balance in my life, I work out 3 times per week, I am healthy.

Probably the most important part of attaining your goals is to write them down. Get them out of your head and onto a piece of paper. Put them on a 3x5 index card and keep them in front of you on your desk as a daily reminder. Never lose sight of your goals.

Remember, if your goal is not a SMART goal then it is just a dream. Having clearly defined goals will increase your confidence, self esteem, and drive your business forward in the coming year.