Every entrepreneur has a vision. Some visions are better than others, but even bad visions can turn into something special. If the entrepreneur pays attention to market conditions and measures the company’s progress compared to the vision, many opportunities will be created. This explains why entrepreneurs must be flexible. The ability to adapt to the marketplace is an essential ingredient in entrepreneurial pursuits.
As Naija Ecash explains in a recently published post Who is the Boss, a large number of baby boomers are retiring from their present jobs and starting new businesses with the knowledge they accrued as an employee. This makes for a competitive environment where the most fit entrepreneurs will survive and flourish.
As diverse as their personalities may be, all successful entrepreneurs share certain qualities; a vision, a plan and research. These three considerations are interwoven into the culture of the endeavor and can serve as pillars for many years.
But, there is one more quality that successful entrepreneurs share. That is the ability to set ambitious but attainable goals. Having a dynamic vision, a solid research-driven business model and the commitment to reach goals is the measure of success and is the quality that makes some enterprises durable for many years.
Proper goal setting is a positive activity that can right the ship, maintain the current profitable course or expand the business. In a small business, goals are often set by the owner. In medium businesses, company goals are often set by a committee with the founding entrepreneur’s input.
According to Entrepreneur.com, at its simplest, a goal is just something you aim for. But goals are powerful contributors to successful business growth in several ways. To begin with, the process of setting goals forces you to think through what you want from your business and how growth may, or may not, provide that. This process helps suggest directions for pursuing that growth, which can greatly improve your chances of achieving those goals.”
When setting business goals, the entrepreneur should follow the following disciplines:
Specificity – Set specific, quantitative goals, not general goals. Selling more widgets is no a specific goals. Selling 10,000 more widgets than last year is a specific goal.
Be Realistically Optimistic – Being positive is a quality that encourages the entrepreneur’s staff. Being optimistic means setting goals that will increase profitability and efficiency. Follow up with a means to the end.
Set Short and Long-Term Goals – The reason we set goals is because we want to improve operations. Set your long-term goals, identify the milestones needed to get there and define them as short-term goals.
Set Action Steps – For the driven entrepreneur, short and long-term goals should be reached through a series of company milestones. After you have identified the milestones, set a course of action to accomplish each step on the road to long-term goals.
For establishing realistic, attainable goals, there are several considerations and practices for which every entrepreneur must consider.
Keeping An Accurate Scorecard – Your short-term goals will be accompanies by your action plan. Be diligent and disciplines about tracking your progress. If the numbers are ahead of schedule, don’t be afraid to raise the bar. If the numbers on your scorecard are lagging, you have some work to do. Never give up on a goal as long as it is part of a larger plan. Never forget your quantitative target.
Visualize Your Goal – Successful entrepreneurs visualize the business after the goals are achieved. This visualization is often shared with co-workers and employees. Good workers respond to a visual, quantified challenge.
Verbalize the Goal – The entrepreneur should be able to verbalize the goal and the process to get there. If you cannot verbalize the goal, how can you present it to employees.
Entrepreneurs realize that success comes at a price. Very often the entrepreneur’s biggest investment is their time. When setting goals, be realistic about the time required to accomplish to cross the goal line.