How to Set Business Goals and ObjectivesGuides
With the year quickly passing and Q3 fast approaching, now is an excellent time to review your business goals and objectives.
As anyone who runs a business will tell you, having secure business goals and objectives are fundamental to any company.
What is the difference between a business goal and a business objective?
Business goals highlight the desired results an organisation wants to achieve through yearly strategies. They are targets set to improve the gross or net profit of a business. Typically, they are broad and long-term and often used to guide the direction of your marketing efforts.
An objective outlines the required actions that you need to take to achieve the overall goal. Objectives dictate how an organisation should move forward, and most of the time, they remain the same, until the company’s circumstances change.
For example, if your overall goal is to provide better customer service, one objective might be to reduce the call-back time of customer inquiries and questions to no more than four hours.
“Goals are undoubtedly critical to your business’s success. Ultimately, your company’s goals need to align with your vision and purpose and propel each employee’s individual actions and decisions.” – HubSpot
Why should we have business goals?
Having business goals is imperative for many reasons. The leading example is that it sets a clear overall direction for the company.
This vision allows employees to gain clarity of the priorities of the company, supporting staff to know what to focus on and in which direction they should aim their efforts. From this, they will be able to see how they will achieve ultimate business success in the next quarter.
Setting company intentions enables managers to delegate tasks and projects accordingly. Not only that, but goals keep everyone motivated.
“The trouble with not having a goal is that you can spend your life running up and down the field and never score.” – Bill Copeland
Instead of working aimlessly, targets allow businesses to have something to work towards and will enable them to recognise if they are on track. Break big goals down into smaller objectives to ensure they are more comfortable to accomplish. These little consistent wins will keep employees motivated to carry on and see the important overall goal through to the end.
Most importantly, goals aid you to measure success. When you set specific objectives, with a clear plan of action and a way to measure the efforts, you will be able to see and gauge your progress and success.
Edkent Media says, “The importance of goal setting in an organisation is something that we cannot stress enough. Goals are what keep your employees motivated, happy, and ready to come into work each day. If you set goals in the right way, there is no question that it will help increase the productivity and success of your company.”
What are some examples of coworking space business goals?
- Revenue objectives: Maintaining consistent profitability is essential for any business. Companies cannot be profitable without consistent profit. Measuring revenue is a great way to track the sustainability of a firm.
- Operational objectives: Operational objectives include making sure that the logistical elements of your business are up to scratch. For instance, it might mean ensuring your supplies will arrive from a manufacturer at the same time each month. These objectives keep the company running smoothly.
- Productivity and performance: Employees are the lifeblood of a business. Making sure that employees remain productive drives revenue and improves customer satisfaction. Measuring employee satisfaction and setting goals for each team ensures efficiency and productivity.
- Customer satisfaction: The customer is always a top priority in any business. Some organisations regularly survey their clients to ensure that they’re making the right impression and driving loyalty.
- Growth: Companies measure growth over the long-term and short-term. Growth appears in the form of website traffic, social media followers, turnover and product sales and much more.
So how do you get started with setting business objectives?
Start by getting specific on what it is you want to achieve. What is your overall business goal?
Whether it’s to maximise your revenue, grow your member base, or increase workspace awareness, once you know your overall business goal, you can start to work out how you are going to achieve it. This will form your objective.
Ensure your objective is clear, straightforward and is easy to understand, otherwise, you won’t be able to focus your efforts or feel truly motivated to achieve it.
Example – “increase profit margin by 20% by signing up new members through marketing tactics”.
Getting specific is essential. When you know what you are aiming for, you’ll know when you have reached it. Being specific with your goal setting helps you to identify if you are off track, and support you to take the needed steps to get back on course.
A goal must have criteria for measuring progress or determine whether a goal has been achieved. The data collection efforts needed to measure a goal can be included in that goal’s action plan.
KPIs serve to measure business goals and provide those accountable with a clear target. With your specific goal in mind, determine which Key Performance Indicator(s) you will use to track your objective.
With Coherent, you can easily keep track of your workspace KPIs – such as revenue, occupancy, and membership popularity. You can review your analytics for the last 12 months to quickly see how your business is performing from month to month.
By being able to measure your objective, you will ultimately be able to assess your progress, stay focused, meet your deadlines, and feel the excitement of getting closer to achieving your goal.
Your goal must be achievable and attainable. Ask yourself – Do you have the necessary resources to achieve this goal? What steps do you need to take to make it happen?
“The backbone of success is hard work, determination, good planning, and perseverance” – Mia Hamm.
The achievability of the goal should be stretched to make you feel challenged, but defined well enough that you can achieve it, says CFI. When you set an achievable goal, you may be able to identify previously overlooked opportunities or resources that can bring you closer to it.
While an objective is a measurable, specific action that needs to happen to meet the larger company goals, a strategy defines how the company will accomplish it. A plan can change throughout a campaign, while an objective should remain the same.
Setting goals you can logically accomplish within a specific timeframe will help keep you motivated and focused.
A practical objective should be relevant to what the organisation or the team wants to achieve overall.
You want to ensure your intentions are relevant, otherwise, objectives could have no impact on the overall performance of the organisation. Non-relevant objectives will, in turn, defeat the ultimate purpose of performance management.
MindTools says a relevant goal can answer “yes” to these questions:
- Does this seem worthwhile?
- Is this the right time?
- Does this match our other efforts/needs?
- Am I the right person to reach this goal?
- Is it applicable in the current socio-economic environment?
By ensuring your goal is relevant to you and your business goals, you will be able to drive your company forward through the next financial quarter.
For maximum success, ensure you set a realistic timeframe for achieving your goal. Having a start and end-date can help provide motivation and aid you to prioritise your workload.
If the goal is not time-constrained, you will be less motivated to achieve it. Giving yourself a time target supplies a sense of urgency and also helps to prevent everyday tasks from taking priority over your longer-term goals.
When setting a time frame, ensure you keep it realistic. Determine how long it will take to achieve your goal, and include it in your plan.
“You too, can determine what you want. You can decide on your major objectives, targets, aims, and destinations”. – W. Clement Stone
Now you have set your goals for the quarter, ensure you review them regularly. Update them frequently to run in line with your business, and take action on getting back on track when you lose your way.
So there you have it:
- Set specific objectives that run inline with your overall business goals,
- Measure your success using KPIs,
- Set a clear action plan to achieve your goal,
- Make sure it’s relevant to your overall business goals,
- Set a timeframe for reaching your goal.
We know things have been a little different for us all this year, but we hope this quick guide helps you to get back on track with your goals, and that you have a successful Q3 and Q4.