Setting Achievable Goals in Business

“People with goals succeed because they know where they are going…” – Earl Nightingale

There is an art to setting business goals. When a business fails to achieve a goal, fault is often put on the actions taken along the journey, when in fact the goal itself is frequently problematic. The goal you set is just as important as the actions you take to succeed… So take the time to carefully establish your goals before you begin to chase your dreams!

Before you set a Goal

Articulate the vision and the purpose.

Be very clear in one short paragraph or less of the vision and the purpose of the goal.  Describe the experience you and those affected, impacted, by the goal will experience.  What will be different for you and them when that goal is realised. 

Complete a SWOT analysis.

“Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats.” Don’t skip this step! It will get you thinking about your challenges and how to best overcome them. 

Know your Industry.

What direction do you believe your industry is headed? What will the future look like in 2, 5 or 10 years? Make educated predictions about your industry and use this insight establish goals that will move you in the right direction.  What issues have occurred historically?  What has been solved for and succeeded and failed, use these insights to help form your opinions. 

Know your Competitors.

It is vital to understand your competitors. Use them as a benchmark to strengthen your point of difference and set goals to exceed and lead in your industry. What are their strengths, their weaknesses. 

What is your point of difference?

What makes you different, what do you do in your business that is different?  What is it that gives you a point of difference? 

What is your values you will live by and expect others to also do?

What are your values and what are the non negotiables.  The tighter you have this, the stronger your point of difference will become.  Hire to it, partner to it, collaborate to it, align customers via it.  Do not let this be your achilleas heal. 

Setting your Goals 


It needs to be clear with each goal, exactly what is the objective of EACH goal.  The goals you set should by challenging but realistic. Your team will not support and will not be motivated to work towards a goal that is too far out of reach. The goals you set should be achievable within 3 years and you must have the resources needed to succeed.

Measurable – Key Results:

How will you know when you have succeeded? Use figures to make your goals measurable. What percentage do you want to increase sales by? Without this detail a growth of 0.2% and 20% will both be considered an achievement. How will you know you have achieved the goal? 

Relevance and Priority:

Keep a visual reminder of your vision or mission to ensure the goals you set align with your corporation’s values and objectives.  Demonstrate the link between this goal and objective to the priorities of the vision and purpose of your business unit and anything that is bigger or broader than your division.  Connect the dots. Prioritisation is a critical element to gain stakeholder support.  


What is the timeframe for this goal? When will you need to achieve this by?  What needs to come before it for success, what needs to come after it for continual improvement? 

Actions & Translate those action to Receiving and Embedding Change Safely and Sustainably .. the thing that will be different:

Actionable steps need to be planned to bridge the gap between now and success with ‘checkpoints’ along the way. If you want to gain more clients, by what percent? By when? What action will be taken? Setting goals is not a task that should be rushed, those involved in the goal setting process must be given ample time to reflect and respond.  Often the receiving and embedding doing the ‘thing’ that will be different is overlooked.  We all need to become masters of change in our current environments.  Dont fail in the last 10% when the receiving and embedding the change is the thing that will determine 100% of the success.


Ferne Eliz King

Love Life  Love YOUR Life

About Ferne

Ferne is globally recognised and called upon for quickly accelerating complex change to achieve business strategies.  Translating strategies to actionable plans, prioritisation of those actions, engagement from the right people, bringing business architecture to life or your life plan if individual and in many cases driving the change as a program director.  The bottom line is Ferne accelerates businesses or individuals to achieve outcomes and enabling that is her passion.

What's the consequence if you take no action?

“If you do the same thing today as yesterday, your tomorrow will be the same as today”.  Ferne Eliz King

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