It’s not enough to write: I want to make more money.
- Why do you want to make more money?
- How much money do you want to make?
- How will you make more money?
These are just some of the questions you should ask before writing your goal.
Consider this: You can use proven goal-setting criteria to write short-term, intermediate, and long-term goals (goal types) in every area of your life (goal categories).
Here’s an example of how I write goals using the S.M.A.R.T. goal-setting criteria.
I will acquire 5 new clients for my online business by asking for referrals, launching a social media marketing campaign, and networking with other online businesses. This will allow me to increase my revenue and grow my business by September 24, 2023.
This goal is SPECIFIC because I have clearly identified what I want to accomplish.
“I will acquire 5 new clients for my online business…”
This goal is MEASURABLE because I’m able to quantify the number of new clients being acquired while maintaining my current client base.
This goal is ATTAINABLE because I’m willing and able to acquire 5 new clients by:
“asking for referrals, launching a social media marketing campaign, and networking with other online businesses.”
This goal is RELEVANT because I’m a business owner and want to grow my business. It’s also relevant because acquiring 5 new clients will grow my business.
“This will allow me to increase my revenue and grow my business.”
This goal is TIME-BOUND because there’s a deadline.
“by September 24, 2023.”
💡 TIP: After writing your goal, assign it a nickname for easy reference, and add it to your list of active goals. For the example above, the goal nickname might be: 2023 Business Growth Goal #1.
It’s important to note that quite a bit more time and effort usually goes into research/planning before writing long-term goals because they tend to be bigger asks with more requirements. For example, you’ll want to confirm that every action item has a projected completion date that is realistic to help with the following:
- Determining an accurate overall goal completion date
- Tracking progress as you work towards the goal
With a long-term goal, maybe “launching a social media marketing campaign” is part of phase 2 of your strategic plan. So, you would want to identify all the action items (with realistic projected completion dates) required to “launch a social media marketing campaign” to help determine an accurate overall phase 2 completion date in your plan.
You could even make “launching a social media marketing campaign” just one of many short-term goals under phase 2 of your long-term goal strategic plan.
Whether you write a strategic plan for some, all, or none of your goals, writing down your goals will help increase your odds of success. You should definitely write down your goals.