Make Your 2021 Business Goals Happen with Quarterly Planning
Did you set all those fantastic goals yet for 2021?? You know, the big ones, the small ones, the realistic ones and the ones that make you a little nervous because they kind of feel unrealistic because they are so awesomely huge? Yeah...those ones!
Whether you achieve those goals this year or not really depends on one thing…you. Your ability to take the actions needed to make them happen. It’s all well and good to sit down and map out your goals, but it’s totally another thing to map out what you actually need to do and commit to those actions.
Sometimes to make our goals happen we need to learn new skills, expand our mindset, ask for help, pivot, adapt, focus, and have confidence in ourselves. That can be a pretty tall order!
One of the questions we love to ask in our business is “what do I need to do to make that happen?” We do our best to look at a task, project, or goal from multiple angles to see what all will be involved and we start prioritizing what needs to happen first in order to get to the next steps that will eventually take us to our goal.
To make those yearly goals even more attainable, breaking them down into quarterly goals helps you create focused, actionable, and timely tasks to keep things progressing. We’ve developed our own Quarterly Audit & Planning tools that we use in our own business, with our clients, and with our online group members that we think is pretty awesome. Here are 4 key takeaways from it.
Approach Your Goals Holistically
There are no stand-alone goals. Your goals are going to be impacted by everything else that is happening, both in business and your personal life. As small business owners, we all know too well the juggle of home life, momming, and getting our biz shiz done. So when you are thinking about what you want to achieve in the year, look at them from a grander scale and see how everything fits together. From a personal life perspective – global pandemic aside – thinking about school year schedules, for example, might help you determine how and when a certain goal can happen. From a business perspective, recognizing when your busy season is will help you plan around it.
Give Yourself Target Dates
To steal a line from Phoebe, don’t be all ‘floopy’ about your goals. They shouldn’t be all over the place and have no end in sight. Give yourself target end dates so that you can plan your actions leading up to them. You can be as specific as “I will achieve this by October 20, 2021” or a little more high level as “I will achieve by the first half of the last quarter of 2021” or somewhere in between. Whichever you choose, just pick a time frame so you have something specific to be working with.
Work Your Goals Backwards
What are the things that you need to do to make your goal happen? We love working our goals backwards and then filling in the gaps. For example, last year one of our goals was to start a podcast. Working backwards, it looked like this:
- Launch podcast on Mother’s Day
- Have podcast episodes on various platforms
- Need to have several pre-recorded and scheduled to drip out for at least a month
- Need a tool to distribute the podcast to platforms and schedule them
- Need a website for the podcast
- Need social media presence for podcast
- Need to create a content calendar for podcast
- Need to figure out what the heck we are talking about on podcast
- Need to learn about podcasting
- Need to identify tools and resources to help us get started
See how we went from the end goal all the way to the beginning action? Obviously there are several steps missing in there, but from a quick brainstorming session it gives you a really good idea on the direction you need to go and the depth of what you need to focus on.
Audit Your Goals
Regularly take stock of where you are at in your goal progress. Look at what challenges have popped up and what opportunities have arisen. Identify if you are where you expect to be, and determine what you need to do to get yourself back on track. We will typically do this at the end of every quarter as we plan for the next one, but it can definitely be done on a weekly or monthly basis. We have found the regular auditing helps us stay motivated and focused.
Are you ready to take some serious action with your business goals this year?? We’re wishing you some serious success with them. If part of your goals include getting your brand and social media leveled up, give us a shout! Email us directly at hello@ defineanddesign.co or connect with us through the form below.
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