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Create a Business Plan: Set goals and objectives

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Why take the time and make the effort to set goals for yourself? Wouldn't it be easier and more productive to just get going? That's sort of like deciding you want to go on vacation and then getting in your car and driving. The odds are when you stop driving you won't have a clue where you are. You also won't know what to pack to enjoy the vacation. Creating goals and objectives sets you on the road to a winning business plan.

Goals are a method of deciding where you want to put your energies and resources. Setting goals focuses yourself. Think of a goal as a destination. Once you've determined the destination you'll need a road map and directions. Objectives are the road map. When you've achieved an objective you've reached a milestone on the way to your destination. And those directions? Those are the strategies you'll need to achieve the objectives. Strategies are the actions and resources are how you get to each objective.

An easy way to set goals is to think about where you want to be, or where you want your company to be in one year. Write a paragraph of that description. If you prefer you can also use bullet points.

Here's an example that's not business related. At the end of 2008 you want to be thinner and healthier. The objectives then would be to lower your cholesterol by 10 points, stop smoking, and lose 25 pounds. The strategies to achieve the objective of losing 25 pounds might be to lose 5 pounds per month by cutting out all sweets from your diet and implementing a plan of walking for 30 minutes each day.

And here's another example that is business related. The goal: At the end of 2008 your company will have doubled its revenue. The objectives could be to introduce 2 new products. The strategies would be to research the market place, decide on the products, have the products developed and so forth. Each strategy is assigned a target and if necessary broken into smaller tasks.

Goals can help you get where you want to be in your life and in your business.

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Business Plan Basics