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SMART Goals and Business Coaching

Aug 17, 2007
Goal setting is one of the most under-utilized tools in your business toolbox, and one that many businesses overlook. Think about the list of resolutions you write up every New Year's well, today is New Year's Day for your business, and it's time to learn how to use goal setting to take your business to the next level.

Leaders of industry all know the important of setting goals SMART goals. Your goals should be:

Specific - Do you know exactly what it is that you want to achieve? Do you want to make a million dollars? Open a new office this year? Get promoted to manager? Be specific! You should know exactly what you want, who's involved in the process, and the time frame in which you accomplish it. Saying, "I want to start running more" is vague by saying, "I'm going to run three days a week and be able to run five miles by April" is a specific goal.

Measurable: Is the goal quantifiable? Ask how much, and how many. Keep track of your progress, chart your successes and celebrate when your hit your target goals. This will help to keep you focused on the task at hand, and keep you motivated. If you can't measure your goal, you won't be able to see when you've made positive changes toward achieving it stay on track, chart your progress and measure your success.

Attainable- If you're 70 years old and 5ft 3", saying that you want to slam-dunk a basketball is a losing proposition. If you set goals for yourself that are impossibly far out of reach, you'll probably give up long before you get there. Identify goals that are within the realm of possibility and then work to develop the skills, tools and ability to achieve them. Don't worry if you have to stretch a bit to get there the most worthy goals bring challenges. Even a goal that seems difficult to reach can become a reality if you work slowly towards it, bringing it closer and closer because you've developed the skills needed to achieve it.

Realistic - It may not be easy to achieve your goal, but it has to be possible given the time, money and manpower needed to achieve it. Focus on a few simple, attainable goals rather than many pie-in-the-sky dreams that'll just distract you from the real goals that you can conquer. You have to be both willing and able to do the work to hit the target if you don't really believe that you can do it, you'll give up before you get there.

Timeline: Smart goal setting includes a target date when you intend to hit the mark. Set a time frame for your goal next month, next week, 18 months from now. A "dumb" goal is, "I want to expand my business." A SMART goal is, "I'm committed to opening a second office by December 1 of next year that will have 2 new employees and generate $300,000 in annual revenue."

Your business coach can help you develop and achieve your SMART goals. Take the next step and contact a qualified business coach, in fact, make that a goal!
About the Author
BusinessCoach.com is a full service Business Coaching firm, founded in 1989 and based on the philosophy of Gary B. Henson, an entrepreneur and business owner for over 25 years. Chari Darneal is Vice President and Senior Business Coach.
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