Delegate, Focus, and GROW Your Business

Skip the Resolutions and Set S.M.A.R.T. Goals

If you’re not among the 7% of people who manage to follow through on New Year resolutions, why set yourself up for failure? More and more people are ditching resolutions all together. Some do it because they’ve faced years of failed attempts; others because they run out of steam in trying to keep unrealistic goals.

Maybe you are feeling like this is the year that you will follow through on your resolution. You are itching to write the list and you finally have the determination to make it happen. Haven’t you felt like this before and how far did you get? Over 25% of those who make resolutions abandon them before January is over. If you really need to make a resolution, resolve to set S.M.A.R.T. (SMART) goals.

What is a SMART Goal?

By now most people in business are familiar with SMART goals. Originally developed by George Doran in 1981 to help management write and achieve better goals and objectives, this method of goal development has helped many people. Originally, the acronym was defined as follows:

  • Specific – determine a definite area for improvement.
  • Measurable – be able to measure your progress.
  • Assignable – indicate who is accountable for the goal
  • Realistic – considering the resources determine what results are achievable
  • Time-related – indicate by when the result will be achieved.

Doran believed these five areas would lead to successful goal attainment when attention was focused on them.

Over the years, the acronym has remained the same though the definitions have varied. The most popular definition through the later years has been: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Time based. People in all walks of life have used SMART goals for a wide variety of achievement in both their business and personal lives.

One of the top New Year resolutions is always losing weight. “This is the year I’m going to get in shape!” So off to the gym and within two or three weeks, gym night is replaced by a night in front of the television. Creating a SMART goal around weight loss would indicate how much weight would be lost by what date. Incremental steps, e.g. two pounds a month, are measurable and achievable as well as realistic. This of course is a very simplistic example of how a SMART goal could look.

Keeping On Target

One of the advantages of SMART goals is that they make it easy to stay on target if you keep the goals in mind. Post them where you can see them regularly. Review and track your progress. Let others know about your goals. Finding an accountability partner to check in with consistently is another way to keep yourself accountable and on track for success. As you get closer and closer to realizing your goal the anticipation of success will build.

You may find that some of your business goals may require help from others. This is where you may benefit from the services of a Virtual Assistant. VAs are available to help with a variety of office and business management tasks that bog down your day. From scheduling to building websites and creating content, your VA is there to provide you with assistance to reach your business goals.

If you make a resolution this year, resolve to set SMART goals, get the help you need and achieve a new level of success.

photo credit: john47kent

Posted on December 30th, 2015 by Rachel Braam, Office Manager

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