— August 24, 2017
A large portion of us set both personal and professional New Year’s resolutions; however, 80% give up on those resolutions after just one month, according to a source. With only four months remaining in 2017, this is the time to revisit your business goals and finish the year off strong.
Revisit Your Goals from the Beginning of the Year
It’s a common attitude to simply give up on goals if you have forgotten about them during the previous months. Although you may tell yourself that you will simply try again come 2018, you will likely find yourself in the same situation.
It’s never too late in the year to get back on track with your goals. Start by revising your goals from the beginning of the year. Make a spreadsheet and mark the goals that you have accomplished (if any). Concentrate on the goals that haven’t been realized and adjust your plans for getting them done.
For example, your goal may have been to raise your website’s unique visitor count to 12,000 this year, which would break down to 1,000 new visitors per month. However, if at this point you have only reached 4,000, it’s unlikely you will be able to get 8,000 more in the next four months. Adjust your goals to make it possible to achieve them this year.
Set Measurable Objectives
The trick to actually realizing your goals is to avoid making ambiguous plans, and focus on setting measurable objectives. Just as planning to lose weight does not hold you accountable to lose a particular number, neither does getting a better work/life balance, raising sales or working more efficiently commit you to any particular action or number.
To increase your chances of reaching a goal, you must break down your objectives into small and measurable tasks with specific deadlines. If you want to raise sales by 10% in the next year, you must make a plan for how you will achieve that. You may need to set aside a certain budget to market every single month, or to hire and train new salespeople. Either of those actions will require you to plan and take certain steps, and the results are measurable, so that you can keep yourself accountable for staying on track.
It’s not uncommon for us to tell ourselves that a big reward is warranted after achieving a certain goal. However, promising yourself a vacation or a luxurious shopping spree can seem very far away when you are just starting to tackle a goal. Although a large and meaningful reward can be promising, you should consider the role that immediate gratification can play as a part of motivation.
Set up smaller rewards that will motivate you to keep on your path in realizing a goal. These can involve giving yourself a day to sleep in late, treating yourself to a scrumptious dessert, allowing 30 minutes to browse the internet for pleasure, etc. Although big rewards can be a lot more encouraging, knowing that a small reward is just around the corner can be a lot more motivating in helping you pursue your goals.