Does your company have goals written down that everyone is aware of?

Setting goals allows you to strive for excellence and gives everyone something to work toward. Business owners who consistently set goals are much more likely to achieve those goals than ones who don’t set any goals at all.

For those who start a new business, eight out of ten fail within the first 18 months. Setting goals allows you to ramp up your efforts and build up the most momentum.

It also allows you to review and see areas that need improvement before they become significant problems. The alternative is to drift around working on everything, but not accomplishing anything. However, you also must limit the number of goals you’re working on at any given time, so you and your employees don’t become overwhelmed.

 

here are five goals you should set for your company through the end of the year

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1. Reduce Expenses

Cash flow is a fundamental problem for many businesses, particularly during growth spurts.

Figuring out ways to reduce expenses frees up precious funds for things such as advertising, developing new products or making improvements that will allow your business to remain competitive for the long-term.

There are many ways to reduce expenses, including the following:

  • Call all your suppliers and ask for a discount. Even a mere five percent less helps pay shipping fees and reduces your overhead.
  • Seek a discount on your rent. Perhaps you could trade improvements for a portion of your lease or help your landlord manage other stores on the property? Anything you can do to reduce this significant cost helps.
  • Take on energy-saving measures. Turn off lights when the store isn’t operating, adjust the thermostat when closed and get rid of old appliances — even in the break room — that eat up energy.
  • Reduce waste. If you print out reports, try to go digital to save on paper. If you order ties for your bags but don’t need them, cut that order. You can also reduce inventory waste by taking a hard look at what sells and what doesn’t.

These are just a few of the ways you can reduce expenses. The more ways you find, the further your dollar stretches.

2. Inspire Your Crew

It’s important that your workers feel motivated, inspired and engaged in their work.

No matter what type of company you run, you want to keep your very best workers and reduce churn. You also want those workers highly trained, so they are efficient at their work and want to do a good job.

There are several ways to inspire your crew, including:

  • Seeking out amazing speakers who will inspire your workers to be the best they can be.
  • Rewarding excellence. Host a meeting every week and recognize excellence on your team and reward it with little trophies, gift cards and simple recognition.
  • Offering something to work toward. For example, if the team makes X dollars in sales, then the entire team gets a pizza party or outing of some sort.

One of the best ways to inspire your crew is to live by example. Start each day with a positive attitude that is contagious to those around you.

3. Increase Productivity

Increasing productivity increases your profits. Productivity is something that can be difficult to improve, though. There are many different areas of focus that might improve how well employees perform.

  • Connect employees. Allow employees to email each other, send instant messages, stay in touch on social media, or otherwise communicate throughout the day. One study found that connected employees are 20 to 25 percent more productive.
  • Allow your employees to play to their strengths. Workers who can highlight their strengths are eight percent more productive.
  • Engage employees. Figure out ways to engage your employees. Their work tends to be better, and an engaged employee is less likely to leave, reducing your churn rate.

Increasing productivity isn’t always an easy puzzle to solve, but it’s worth the time and effort to do so.

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4. Build Your Team

Teambuilding activities are one of those things you and your workers either love or dread. However, it doesn’t have to be that way. There are effortless ways to work on team building throughout the week rather than blocking out huge chunks of time, such as:

  • Hold a daily scrum meeting. This should be a very short five- or 10-minute session to help everyone get on the same page and approach work from the same perspective.
  • Hold weekly team meetings and allow everyone to have a voice.
  • Take time out for a team building exercise a couple of times a week.

While a retreat is beneficial to get everyone on the same page, team building should be an ongoing effort.

5. Help the World

If your company doesn’t already have a clear mission, take the time to figure out how you benefit the rest of the world. This could mean focusing on a specific organization you believe in and want to help, offering a service to your customers or helping one customer make life better.

Other ideas include the following:

  • Take on a cause. Get the entire company involved in raising money for a cause you believe in. Ideally, the purpose will align with your overall company values.
  • Go green! Find ways to enhance your company more environmentally aware.
  • Give back to your customers. Choose one customer you know is struggling and do something amazing for that person. For example, if you serve small businesses, offer free services for a year to one company you know needs the help.
  • Give your employees a day to go out and work for causes they believe in. Pay them for the day as long as they volunteer.

There are many ways a company can help the world. In what ways will you make a difference?

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Setting Goals

Ideally, goal setting is something you’ll look at on an ongoing basis. The goals you set today should be specific and something you can accomplish. Once you’ve reached them, look at where you’d like to go next as a company and set new goals.

In addition to company-wide goals, each team and individual should have specific goals.

There are many different methods of goal setting — choose one that makes the most sense to you, such as SMART goals and stick to the plan until you’ve achieved all you want to and more.


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Lexie Lu is a contributing writer for Splendor Design and a freelance designer. She enjoys writing code and learning about new web platforms. She manages Design Roast and can be followed on Twitter @lexieludesigner.

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