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SMART goals mean big business

Now I’m guessing you’ve heard of SMART goals or SMART objectives. You might also know what SMART stands for.

However, hand on heart time, do you honestly use the principals behind SMART to achieve your sales goals?

Do you really?

You see I have delivered hundreds, probably thousands of hours of sales coaching and I am always coming across a serious lack of SMART goal setting. Take this one for example.

“I am going to be the number one consultant in my niche by the end of the year”

Mmmmmmmm, but how are you going to measure that?

“I am going to be the number one consultant in my niche by the end of the year by winning the annual award in our industry”

OK better, but if the end of the year is barely a month away, or you are only just starting out in the industry, then you will struggle. Let’s face it, if you struggle to achieve a goal then your confidence will be seriously battered and bruised leaving your motivation so low that it’s buried 6ft under.

For this example a better SMART goal would be-

“I am going to get a mentor and study really hard to become the number one consultant in my niche by the end of next year by winning the annual award in our industry”

Can you spot the difference?

What are really SMART Goals

A SMART goal is defined as one that is

Specific

Measurable

Achievable

Realistic (as defined by the outcome)

Timely

Got any SMART Goals?

If you have then stop reading this blog post immediately and grab the SMART Goals you have set to help yourself. If you haven’t any written down then take five minutes to write your goal as clearly and concisely as possible. Don’t spend too much time doing this as I am going to show you how to do it properly.

Five Minutes Later

Done? Now carry on reading and after each section check if that goal you’ve written down really does tick the box under each element of SMART.

Specific

Goals should be simplistically written and clearly defined describing exactly what you are going to do. Specific is the What, Why, and How of the SMART model. Ask yourself-

  • What will the goal accomplish?
  • How and why will it be accomplished?

Measurable

Goals should be measurable with tangible evidence that you have accomplished the goal. Usually, the entire goal statement is a measure for the project, but there are often several short-term or smaller measurements leading up to the goal. Think about –

  • How will you measure whether or not the goal has been reached?
  • What might be the most effective way of measuring your achievment?

You may want to list at least two indicators to help you do this.

Achievable

Goals should always be achievable. However they should stretch you slightly in a way that challenges you, but defined well enough so that you can achieve them. You must always possess the appropriate knowledge, skills, and abilities needed to achieve the goal or be in a position to collaborate with someone who can assist you.

Almost any goal can be achieved when you plan your steps wisely and establish a time frame that allows you to carry out those steps. As you carry out the steps, you can achieve goals that may have seemed impossible when you first started. On the other hand, if a goal is impossible to achieve, you may not even try to accomplish it. Achievable goals will motivate, impossible goals will achieve the exact opposite.

Think about –

  • If the goal is possible?
  • Have others done it successfully before?
  • Do you have the necessary knowledge, skills, abilities, and resources to accomplish the goal?
  • Will meeting the goal challenge you or your business without defeating you?

Realistic

Goals should measure outcomes, not activities and always be relevant to your business. To make your goal realistic consider –

  • What is the reason, purpose, or benefit of accomplishing the goal?
  • What is the result (not activities leading up to the result) of the goal?

Time-bound

Goals should ALWAYS be linked to a time frame that creates a practical sense of urgency, or results in tension between the current reality and the vision of the goal. Without such tension, the goal is unlikely to produce a relevant outcome.

What is the established completion date?

Does that completion date actually create a practical sense of urgency?

The key point about achieving sales goals is that they that they must support the overall goals for your business. Don’t forget to check them against the mission statement and vision for your business against your overall sales and marketing strategy.

If struggle to be anything but OK at selling, then you obviously need help setting SMART goals. By the end of a free 20 minute sales accelerator call with me, I know you will be super clear about what you need to do to achieve  bigger, better goals!

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