The New Year is approaching faster than ever, and at Flexibake, we know you’ve started putting together business goals for 2017. Putting goals in place is great, but planning to hit those goals is even better. A lot of businesses select goals they’d like to achieve for the new year but fail to do the necessary researchingplanning, and scheduling to actually achieve those goals during the year.

Step 1: Write down your main business goals

Your first step to a planning and hitting your goals is to select specific and sensible goals. Making a goal to simply “increase sales by 15%” is not good enough. Which particular product do you wish to increase sales of? How do you plan to do so and why do you believe that you should focus on this product?

Step 2: Evaluate your resources

The next step is to make sure the goal is attainable and measurable. Do you have a reasonable budget for sales and marketing to achieve this business goal? Do you have the right people in place to achieve a 100% increase in Facebook followers? Does your team have a strong enough understanding of SEO to increase sales in your online store? These are important questions to ask yourself because if you don’t have the right budget, people, or tools in place already, then perhaps your goal is a little premature.

Step 3: Align business goals with Stakeholders’ vision

You could have the best goals on the team but if the company stakeholders don’t agree with you, it’s unlikely the goal will be included in next years forecast. It’s a good idea to pick the brain of different decision makers during the holiday season so that when you sit down with the executive team in the New Year, they have a good idea of your goals beforehand. They can also offer insight or a different view point on whether a goal makes sense or is even attainable.

Step 4: Give your business goals realistic timelines

Once you have everyone on board, it’s time to set goal targets and goal timelines. Simply working toward the end goal for the entire year, without any checkpoints, may cause you and your team to become tired or even lose sight of the goal. A better idea is to set timelines and smaller monthly or quarterly goals to help you stay on track and let your stakeholders monitor your progress.

Step 5: Assign an accountable project leader

If you’re overseeing several projects and business goals during the year, it’s a good idea to assign a project leader to each team. That way you have one person in each group who will be accountable and keep you up-to-date during the year. This person can be in charge of delegation, meeting reports, and timeline management. Without a leader you might hear a lot of “well, it’s not my fault…” or “that wasn’t my job…”.

These are some of the steps we follow when organizing and managing projects here at FlexiBake. Our implementation specialists are goal hitting ninjas, take a look at our implementation bundles if you are interested in working with us for a FlexiBake software implementation project.