What are your goals in your business?

As a young manager in corporate America, I remember going through that time-tested ritual of managing employees – every year (or every so often) sitting down with my team and asking “So what are your goals?”

Some were funny (I want to find a date?) and some were personal (I’d like to be married and have kids.) Others were serious (I need to get a degree) and others were down right scary (I need to get out of my abusive relationship.) But when I managed people, no goals were off the table.  I knew that while as a boss, I  might have nothing I could do about their personal goals, knowing what was happening in their whole life made me a better boss and them aware that I really did care about the “whole” employee.

So it might feel odd to you at first when you are sitting down and establishing what your goals are in your business.  But just like I asked my employees what their goals were in business, life, etc., so too I’m going to ask you to consider what your goals are in work, in life, etc.

Why? Because as an entrepreneur you GET to design your life! Your work life and your personal life SHOULD interrelate. And if they don’t – that can actually cause more harm.

So, as discussed in the workbook for “36 Things You Need to Know Now” consider what professional goals you have? Consider your financial needs, scope or size of business you want, or what you want to focus on in your work. What unique skills or assets do you have that you would want to share with the web
community? Is this a creative outlet for you? A supplement to your existing
income?  How much money do you need to earn and on what frequency or basis?

Many business books, business classes even, fail to address the very personal reasons why people become entrepreneurs and how designing both your life plan and your business plan together from the beginning can allow you to live the life you’re envisioning.

Don’t forget to consider what you want and need for your personal life. Are you a stay at home mom with young children? Is this web-based business just a supplement to your existing income? Do you have ailing parents who need more support and time from you?   What are your goals in this matter? What will self-employment  empower you to do that working for someone else WON’T?

See how the two sets of goals – both personal and professional – interrelate. How can you make your professional life support your personal goals? How can your personal life not take over your professional obligations?

  • Should you start and stop your day at certain times so that you can supervise homework?
  • Can you set aside certain tasks that can be easily done from home when the kids are home?
  • Can you ensure your new business is “mobile” allowing you to travel at a moment’s notice to take care of ailing parents?
  • Is there a way that you can build a sustaining income that will automatically run, allowing you to focus on the crisis you’re managing and  yet still know there is money coming in?

There’s no magic button here: you’re going to make mistakes and there are always going to be adjustments. But if you can begin to think of your life as two interconnected portions that don’t have to “compete against” each other but rather work to support and enable the other, you’ll be miles ahead.

“Now”
snapshot:

  • Apartment living
  • Hate job
  • Barely making ends meet
  • No “cushion” for emergencies
  • Need plan for future finances: retirement,
    college fund for kids

 

Paint
the picture of what you want your days to look like and how your web-based
business will fit into your life – rather than your life finding a way to fit
into your business. Consider the details: how many hours a day/week you can
realistically work (or want to work), how accountable or accessible you are or
will need to be to others, how much travel you do (or will want to do)?

 

More Goal Setting:

Now, that you
know why you’re doing this, consider where you want to be in 1, 3, or 5 years.
Go crazy – 10 years!  What does your life
look like a year from now? How is it different from your current situation? Can
you pin point the incremental changes or differences between what life is like
for you now versus what it will be like in a year?

So for an
example: let’s say right now you’re barely making ends meet and working at a
job you hate. Your “now” snapshot might be:

In this spot:
what would a year from now look like? Are you making a $100-200 extra a month?
Have you replaced your income yet?

So, set your
goal – just as you would if you were going on a road trip. Where are you headed
in your new business? What is it you want to accomplish?

Category: Organizational Management

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