How to Set Goals for the New Year

With the New Year upon us it is time to plan our Small Business Goals. Time to look at the big picture, the picture that has us at the end of the year looking back at where it all began. Yes you do need to start somewhere and start sometime so why not now? Forget all the excuses that are now swimming around in your head, lets just take one step at a time and you will be an expert at how to set goals for the new year.Goal Setting Action Taker

The Process of Setting Goals

To set goals for your small business you need a plan. A method of determining and developing a process that will assist you in achieving the end result. This process formalizes your ideas, giving your thoughts some structure and means to quantify the reason you are in small business. By drawing up a framework you establish a direction for your small business. Start by asking yourself;

  1. Where is my small business now?
  2. Where do I want my small business to be in twelve months time?
  3. How do I get my small business there.

The Small Business Audit

Lets tackle “where is my business now. This is your small business audit, be truthful and trust in yourself. Write down the answers to these questions.

  • How do my customers view my small business? If you do not know start asking. eg: Thank you for coming in today, I am hoping you can help me out as I would like to improve the services we provide, how do you view my small business?
  • What is my competitive advantage? My niche, what do I do differently then anyone else?
  • Who is my support team?
  • What are my biggest obstacles?
  • Who will be my customer? (customer demographics)

Now what do you want to achieve, where do you want your small business to be in twelve months? Take a step back, some quiet time and visualize your small business in twelve months time. Have a set date. eg: On the 1st January 2013 my small business (insert name here) will have an established blog post enabling my customers to stay in touch with current industry trends. This part is your Vision Statement (On the 1st January 2013 my small business (insert name here) will have an established blog post) and this part is your Goal (enabling my customers to stay in touch with current industry trends). Congratulations you now have your first goal and date for the goal to be achieved.

Your Second Set Of Goals

If you want a successful small business, and I know you do as you are still reading this post, you require two sets of Goals for the New Year. The second set are your personal goals. Your personal goals need to be in alignment with your small business goals. When this happens the motivation to achieve and stay on target for the end result will be unstoppable.

Achieving Small Business Goals

This is the fun part, the part where you get your hands dirty and are paid for doing something that you love . This is how you achieve your set goals for the New Year. Start with an action plan, follow the below steps.

  1. List your goals.
  2. Gather information. eg: Obstacles and how to overcome them.
  3. Analise this information.
  4. Prepare your first plan of attack. (Step by step)
  5. Review your plan of attack.
  6. Gather extra information required.
  7. Prepare final action plan.
  8. Seek assistance from your support team.
  9. Implement your small business action plan.
  10. Monitor progress throughout the year.
  11. Celebrate success.

Well this all seems achievable, we now know what we want, when we want to achieve it and how we will get it. We know How to Set Goals for the New Year.

Five Small Business Treasures

  • If you want something to happen take Action.
  • One of the most time effective ways to get something done is to take time out and plan your course of action (objectives).
  • Visualize the end result.
  • Follow your plan one step at a time.
  • Now you know how to set goals for the New Year , do point one. Action takers are success makers.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Speed Networking for Small Business

We have all heard of it, or have we, no that was speed dating, a concept for the time poor professional to meet similar people with the short term view of a date and just maybe in the long term a relationship. Well lets take a step back and look at Speed Networking for Small Business. The concept is not that much different then speed dating. The Small Business owner, operator, manager or staff member can be classed as time poor, looking for short term meeting opportunities and long term business relationships. Sound familiar.

Host your own Speed Networking event

Speed Networking

How Does Speed Networking Work

To understand just how Small Business can benefit from Speed Networking lets take a look at the end result. What is it that we all aim for in Small Business? Profit. And to obtain profit we need customers. And to grow our customer base we need to forge relationships and broaden our connections by increasing the exposure of our business.

Starting a Speed Networking Group

There would be many different ways you could start your Speed Networking for Small Business group. We suggest the following;

  1. Meeting random attendees in a designated area. (One on one).
  2. Meeting specific representatives of Small Businesses based on preassigned matching.
  3. Address a preselected group where individuals address all participants.

The secret to a successful Speed Networking meeting is time (speed). Place a time limit on the networking presentations, six minutes is a good starting point. This is broken down to two minutes for each presentation and one minute each for questions and the swapping of information (contact details). The speed of the networking meeting is monitored by a facilitator usually with the ringing of a bell. Time to move on to your next prospective customer.

Speed Networking for Small Business takes Time

You are right, nothing is easy in Small Business, but there are ways to make things just a little easier. Outsource. Outsource everything as you have enough to do in the running of your small business. Contact your local government small business department. Every country, every state, every city has one. (use Google). They will let you know of groups already running in your part of the world and place you in contact with the facilitators. Associations and clubs are another source of Speed Networking events.

The Host

Being the host gives you the expert status of Communication Leader. You will find the position will add value to your Small Business and stand you as a person to trust. It will be your job to keep the conversations interesting and varied. Try suggestions prior to the start of the speed networking session, place a seed in the minds of the participants by relating topics to your own experiences. Remember you are the one with the expert status.

The After Party

Well not quite a party as we are here for the purpose of forging new small business relationships. But this part will be loud, fun and more relaxed. The time period scheduled for this part of the event should be no longer then one hour. This allows all delegates the opportunity to fine tuneĀ  and add value to the new found relationships.

Five Small Business Treasures

  • Your business card is the gold in your treasure chest, only give them out to delegates you want to work with.
  • You have planned to be at this event so plan your message. Rehearse it, record it, listen to it, refine it.
  • Show an interest in your Speed Networking partner, ask questions.
  • Stand out with a story of success, you need to be remembered in a positive way.
  • The largest piece of gold in the treasure chest is communicate. research their business and follow up with some free, yes free advise.

Let us know at Small Business Treasures about your upcoming Speed Networking for Small Business events. The successes you have had and the suggestions for improving the events you have attended. Go ahead, comment below.