It’s that time of year again. The time when we start looking back over our goals and thinking about new ones. Last year, I made a few mistakes when setting my goals. Not the least of which was overestimating how much work I could get done with a new baby and failing to reevaluate my goals when we decided to homeschool our boys. And by we, I mean me. My husband helps more than I thought he would with school but 90% of it, is on me.
So, because of how I went about setting my goals last year, this year I’ve decided to get a little bit more technical. This post is going to be all about SMART goals and why making sure your goals fit into the SMART category is key to success. My next post is going to talk more about Strategy vs Tactics, you can look for it next week.
OK, what does SMART stand for?
Specific: Your goals need to be specific. Last year, all mine were very specific. I wanted to make X amount of money and I wanted to complete certain projects. They should also fit into your overall strategy and overarching business goals, more about this next week!
Measurable: Can you see the progress you’re making? Are you selling more books each month than the last? Writing more words? Make sure there is a way to tell if you’re making progress in your goals. If you can measure your progress or lack thereof you can make the necessary adjustments to be successful. And we all know success feels good and motivates us to do more.
Actionable: You need to be able to look at the data (sales numbers, word counts, etc.) and be able to do something to improve them or keep things moving forward. Make sure you always know exactly what steps you need to take on a day to day basis to accomplisher goals.
Relevant: Can you use the data to solve a problem that kept you from achieving past goals? Is this goal relevant to your career goals and strategy?
Time-related: Goals should always be time sensitive. As humans, we’re naturally born procrastinators. I’m pretty sure my mother is the only acceptation to this rule. So give yourself deadlines and make this happen! Personally, I like quarterly goals that help me achieve yearly goals. I did this for 2017 and while on the whole, I wasn't able to accomplish what I wanted to, I never felt overwhelmed or stressed because everything was broken down into manageable chunks.
Wondering why regular old goals aren’t good enough? Making SMART Goals is a smart business decision. They were literally designed to help you succeed. If you’re like me and about look at your 2017 goals and see all the things you didn’t accomplish, the question shouldn’t be "Why do I need SMART Goals?" It should be "Why the heck did it take you this long to share them with us?" (PS I just learned about them myself or I would have used them this year and been in a slightly better position moving into 2018)
What does 2018 look like for you and your career? V and I will go over last years goals and be posting the new ones for 2018 before new years. Did you accomplish your goals or did you pull a me and bite off more than you could chew? Let us know in the comments!
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