How to Set, Prioritize, and Achieve SMART Goals for Your Company In 2023

Setting Achievable Goals for Your Company in 2023

How to Set, Prioritize, and Achieve SMART Goals for Your Company In 2023

Wait a minute, 2022 isn’t over yet, right? Technically, that’s true. But the holiday season will soon be upon us, and the time for strategic business planning is slipping rapidly into 2023. 

It’s hard to believe that another year has almost gone by already. Small businesses are recovering from several difficult years, and there are certainly lingering challenges to overcome, like inflation, supply chain issues, etc. The good news, though, is that 2023 is full of promise.

According to CNBC, businesses, workforces, and consumer cash expenditures are growing steadily again. And it looks like business owners and management teams will be extremely busy for the balance of this year and into 2023. 

So it’s time to set some goals. And for business owners, executives, and management teams, the SMART framework might be just what you’re looking for.   

It’s also smart to consider engaging with a trusted partner with a comprehensive understanding of your business, industry sector, management style, and hiring needs.

At Fifth Ascent, we specialize in a laser-focused range of business optimization solutions focused on EOS implementation, talent optimization, and leadership coaching for small businesses just like yours. 

So what exactly is SMART goal setting, and how do you use it?

The professional development thought leaders at MindTools provide some excellent history and context:

Its criteria (SMART) are commonly attributed to Peter Drucker’s Management by Objectives concept. The first known use of the term occurs in the November 1981 issue of Management Review by George T. Doran. Since then, Professor Robert S. Rubin (Saint Louis University) wrote about SMART in an article for The Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology. He stated that SMART has come to mean different things to different people, as shown below.

To make sure your goals are clear and reachable, each one should be:

Specific (simple, sensible, significant).

Measurable (meaningful, motivating).

Achievable (agreed, attainable).

Relevant (reasonable, realistic and resourced, results-based).

Time bound (time-based, time limited, time/cost limited, timely, time-sensitive).

When you look at the SMART framework, it seems logical and straightforward. And it’s meant to be that way. This post will look at the individual elements of the SMART framework and offer some simple, concise suggestions on how to use it effectively. 

So how do business owners and leadership teams use the SMART goal-setting framework?  

Be as specific as possible with your goals, especially when you first get started.  

By definition, the more specific your goals are, the easier it will be to explain, implement, and measure them. Soon, you’ll start to see the building-block effect of SMART goal-setting. Detailed, meticulously thought-out business goals will also be measurable by definition.

Use simple, measurable metrics in your goal setting.

Human nature tends to seek structured and quantifiable measurements, including business goals. And with business and people strategies, you need to be vigilantly mindful of human nature. We always advise our clients to set goals, for example, talent acquisition objectives, with hard numbers and dates. If you’re ultra-specific with your goal descriptions in step one, this part will be easy.   

Evaluate your goal. Is it achievable in the time frame you’ve allocated?

Take this opportunity to give yourself a chance to adjust. You might need to break your overall goal into smaller, more actionable, measurable steps. This step in the process will also allow you to reexamine any dependencies that might be out of your direct control.

Evaluate goal relevance. Will your goal generate a positive outcome in your corporate ecosystem?

Ask yourself if you’ve chosen the right goal at the right time. Does this goal have significant relevance to the company’s overall success and your team’s short and long-term objectives? 

If not, for example, if the goal is more personal than corporate, you may need to go back to the beginning and reprioritize a bit.  

Measure goal attainment against tight timelines—and stay on track daily, weekly, and monthly.

By chopping your goals up into small, clearly defined, bite-sized pieces, you should be able to hit the timelines you’ve set for completion. And this part is crucial. SMART goal-setting is an iterative process. You will get better as you continue to use the framework.

Remember, though, hitting the timelines is your number one objective. So keep adjusting the process until you are consistently hitting your goals and objectives within your timelines.  

Could you and your team use some help setting goals for 2023?

Our team has over two decades of experience in senior leadership roles in Fortune 500 and privately-owned businesses delivering top-line growth and profitability across a broad spectrum of industries.

Our team has helped companies scale their operations to support double-digit growth and build high-performing leadership teams through clarity of vision and alignment on direction. The foundation for growth is built on cultivating a workforce culture that embodies trust, establishing open communications that foster growth, promoting informed risk management, and encouraging innovation.

Our passion is to help teams discover their extraordinary so they can achieve extraordinary things.

Whether you’re a small or mid-market company, we can help you create manageable goals and team alignment across all levels of your business. Is it time to set SMART goals to help you achieve your vision for continued growth and success in 2023?
Call us at 415.991.4961 or get in touch with our team online today to schedule a complimentary consultation.