Towards the end of every year, most people reflect on the previous 12 months. Thoughts about what could have been and what actually happened enter their minds. Sadly, for some the gap between the two is considerable, and this reflection can become a reason to beat yourself up. Even worse, pretending it didn’t happen and hope the coming year will be different.
The reality is that if you want things to change, you will have to change.
If you didn’t get the results you wanted in your business, then you need to ask yourself some questions. If you didn’t meet the goals you had for your life personally, then you will also need to figure out why. If you think hard enough, then you will discover what it was that distracted or prevented you from meeting your goals, so you can plan to handle them in the future.
The Basic Recipe
With any goal planning activity, the approach is relatively simple. By using this ‘recipe’ for success, you will guarantee that every year you are changing and improving on the previous year’s performance, getting closer to realizing your dreams.
Here is the recipe:
* Reflect on the past year – what you did and didn’t do/achieve, etc * Find out where the gaps were – between what you wanted and what you got * Plan to fill these gaps next year – what steps must you take to get what you want
It isn’t any more difficult than that. Some may already have a process that helps to analyze their results and make the necessary changes. Whether you use your own method, or this suggested one, the result should be that you are better prepared for the coming year.
What happened in your Business?
In order to know where you are going, you need to know where you have come from. This means that you need to understand what has happened, so you can adapt and evolve your business into the success you want it to be.
Have a go at answering these questions:
* How many new customers did I want to have this year? How many did I actually get?
* What revenue did I want to make this year? What did I actually make?
* What was my customer solicitation like this year? How did I get my new customers?
* How did I promote my services/products?
* What was I like to my staff/co-workers?
* What was my attitude like at work?
* What did I do differently to other businesses? Were they more or less successful?
The answers to these questions will tell you what you wanted to achieve, and help you reflect on how you performed in your business. Next, write down those things that you want to achieve in 2006.
Set your goals for 2006
As you write down your goals for next year, it is important to also write them down in such a way as to convince your sub-conscious mind that you really do want these things. To do this, you must phrase your goal is the following way (developed by Jack Canfield in The Success Principles):
I am _, by _
So, if your goal is to have 100 new customers next year, the goal would be written this way:
I am enthusiastically securing 100 new customers by December 31st 2006
This written goal contains three important elements:
* A doing/descriptive word/phrase about the goal
* The target
* The date to achieve it by
As another point, by stating that you have (or I am) in the goal says to your mind that it is already a reality, If you write down I will, then the brain doesn’t take you seriously.
I know it sounds a bit ‘out there’, but seriously, it’s true.
Use these techniques to develop 100 goals for yourself next year. It can be a combination of business and personal goals, and ideally it should contain goals across the 7 key areas of your life. To find out about these areas, read our articles on Balancing Your Life at our web site.
2006 can and should be the year that your business dreams become a reality. Get out there and make it happen.
Matthew Tibble is passionate about helping small businesses achieve online business success. With 10 years experience in sales and marketing, he has developed an enlightened approach to business that combines proven philosophies with practical implementation. For more information, email email@example.com , or visit http://www.businessplanningmadeeasy.com/