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It’s almost that time of year again. With the holiday season fast approaching, thoughts turn to the 12 months ahead. What are our goals? What will we do better?What do we want to change?

As a business owner, you don’t need to wait until January 1 to start working towards your goals. Start planning them now.By setting your goals early, you can form your strategies and milestones for 2019, determine how you spend your time and budget, and get the year off to a winning start.

So, how can you make sure you make goals you can keep?

The key is to ensure the business goals are SMART:

  • Specific: Be clear about what you want to achieve
  • Measurable: Make sure the goal (and your progress) can be measured
  • Achievable: Do you have the time, money and resources to meet your goal?
  • Relevant: Is your goal relevant to your business?
  • Timely: Set a realistic deadline.

(Check out this useful article by Business.gov.au on how to set SMART business goals)

Keeping this in mind, here are 4 goals you can plan for now:

Goal 1: Improve the financial health of your business

Make 2019 the year you lock down your spending and improve the financial health of your business. Take a good look at where money is coming in and going out. Be specific about how you will reduce business expenses, whether that’s using more technology, changing up your operations or travelling less. Struggling to work out how to improve your financial health? Seek professional advice. (We talk more about the 5 essential business health checks you should do in this article)

Goal 2: Revisit your business plan

When did you last look at your business plan? When did you last update it? Now is the perfect time to dust it off and see where you are versus where you wanted to be. Use this opportunity to do a SWOT Analysis. Identify the strengths and weaknesses of your business, your offering, and your competition. Doing a SWOT analysis will help you work out where to invest in your business and see what your competition is doing better than you.

Goal 3: Invest in marketing

Find fresh ways to cut through the clutter and get noticed in 2019. According to NAB, 45% of Australian businesses get most of their sales from local customers. That means if you’re worrying about how to compete against big brand advertising budgets, local area marketing could be the answer. Not sure where to start? Business.gov.au provides a handy guide on how to create a marketing plan (with free templates). And here are some common marketing mistakes to avoid.

Goal 4: Book a holiday (a proper one)

How long has it been since you took abreak from your business?Taking time away from your business can benefit you, your loved ones and your business. Even a micro-holiday can help reduce stress and prevent burnout, while also giving you a fresh perspective on your business. While you count down to your holiday, free up your time by creating a team.

Over to you

Don’t wait until January 1 to propel your business success. Take some time to set goals for your business now and it will pay off in the year ahead. Tell us, what will your business goals be?

 

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