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How To Set Short-Term Goals For Your Company’s Sucess

Mission statements are usually heavy. How about a short-term goal process that you can use to drive your Team?

Many business leaders struggle to get the perfect Mission Statement for their companies. The pressure of making it perfect and having it be a functional part of the culture is challenging.

Too often, it sits on a shelf and rarely is considered. It’s merely lip service … if it’s even talked about.
Instead of trying to encompass everything you want your company or Team to be, you could try something that we started in the last few years: Setting clearly stated short-term goals using one of the Business Made Simple frameworks. Limiting ourselves to a 6-month goal gave us enough time to feel like we could accomplish something significant, rallying the Team around an important objective, without the pressure of completely defining our company.

The Framework

Here are the elements of the framework with a few tips based on our experience:

  1. Write a 6-Month Goal using the following template: We will accomplish X (desired outcome), by X (date 6 months from now), because of X (why is it important to us).
    Tips to consider:
    – Make sure the desired outcome is specific, simply stated and easy to tell if you’ve made it….vague doesn’t work!
    – Shorter is better – you want your Team to be able to memorize it!
    – The “why” is important, just make sure it’s in language that your Team wants to use.
    Sample: We will reach one million dollars in monthly sales by September 30th because our growing group of customers are counting on us for their success as it positions us for a bright future.
  2. Define the 3 Key Characteristics that Team members will need to embody if the goal is to be accomplished.
    Tips to consider:
    – Make them specific … vague doesn’t work!
    – Make them aspirational … who are we going to become to accomplish this mission.
    – Make them instructive … how, specifically, do we need to act to get the mission done.
    Sample: We are Detail-Oriented, We are Creative Problem-Solvers, We Consistently Seek Improvements.
  3. Determine the Critical Actions each Team member will need to take to accomplish the goal.
    Tips to Consider:
    – Make the actions ones that everyone can do every day … the more people actively involved, the more united the Team.
    – Brainstorm any actions, even simple ones, that can positively impact the outcome towards the Goal … simple is fine, especially if it helps engage the whole Team!
    Sample: We Start Each Day with a Key Priority & Outcome Identified, We Vigilantly Track & Support our Key Machines, We Always Look for Ways to Keep Our Spindles Turning Making Good Parts.
  4. Write the Story Pitch using the following elements:
    – Start with the problem that you’re solving by achieving the goal.
    – Agitate the problem to make it worse.
    – Position your company, your Team, or your product and the accomplishment of the goal as the resolution to the problem.
    – Describe the happy ending experienced when the problem is solved and the goal is achieved.
    Sample: Industrial Customers have routinely endured poor service & communications for decades and the pandemic has made it even worse.  Supply chains and staffing have been radically disrupted, but you shouldn’t also be kept in the dark by your suppliers.  As a Manufacturer, it makes you want to start your own in-house shop.  Instead, through consistent, proactive & transparent communication, partnering with Bowden is the closest thing to having your own in-house shop.  Getting quality products delivered and solid information from order to receipt changes your typical frustrations into confident communications with your Customers every day.
    Tips to Consider:
    – This is the longest part of the framework but sums up the important aspects of why this matters and invites people into a story … make it a story that you’re all excited to engage in!
    – Make the happy ending visual, so it’s easy to picture the scene.
  5. Determine a Theme for the Goal. It’s the simplified way to say why accomplishing the goal matters.
    Tips to Consider
    :
    – One easy way to find the theme is to ask “Why does accomplishing our goal matter?”….the answer should be “Because ….X”
    – It can just be a simple version of the “why” from the goal statement.
    Sample: Delivering for our Customers that are Counting on Us!

With the 6-month goal clearly stated, you can more easily repeat the mission on a consistent basis and you’ll unite your Team as a result.  For more on this framework, you can check out Days 11-15 of the Business Made Simple Daily Course or the Mission Statement Made Simple Course as a subscriber to Business Made Simple.

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