By Janette Blanco | August 1, 2017
Setting realistic goals and having discipline are the common denominator of successful entrepreneurs.
Let’s talk about goals. Are they difficult to set? Absolutely they are, even more so when they are realistic. There is a lot of research involved and often entrepreneurs don’t know how or where to start.
Here there are few suggestions to help you prep for setting realistic goals:
- Find out what your city and county are doing to help entrepreneurs. Identify resources that fit your needs and use them.Start by going online to the official website for your city or county. They usually have a business link or a “Doing Business With” link. Identify resources from links.
- Become familiar with the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). Once more go online to the official SBA website and identify resources.
- Find a mentor to discuss your business idea and resources. A mentor will help you stay focused and hold you accountable. A mentor should be a person knowledgeable in your industry.
- Be open-minded. Listen to people. Network and ask for opinions. Do not be offended if you get negative feedback. On the contrary, be thankful and use it to modify your business concept.Listening to people is one of the most difficult yet smart ways to collect data about how people feel about your business.
- Be aware of professional institutions and chambers of commerce in your area. Check them out. See if you are a good fit. If you are a good fit get involved; be present and active. Joining a chamber or a professional institution may give your customer a perception that you have a reliable, serious business. However, to get the maximum return on investment you must participate in events, be a volunteer, support chamber members, be a member of the committees, or even be an ambassador.
- Know your elected officials. Learn what they stand for.
- Take a look into the future. Learn about the upcoming changes, new developments and new businesses coming up in your city. Get connected with your economic development organizations to get information.
- Use marketing tools to get to know your industry. Remember it is all about facts.
Once you have done your research and use proper tools and resources, realistic goals must be set. Goals are meaningless if actions are not taken. Implementation requires discipline. Discipline is extremely hard and not easy to achieve if you don’t have a plan.
Here are a few suggestions to keep you focused:
- Create a schedule and stick with it – a calendar with little room for changes.
- Measure results monthly to keep you motivated. Discuss results in a monthly meetingwith your mentor.
- Have your mentor monitor your business regularly.
- Set up vacation time where you can rest your mind and come back strong to work towards your goals.
- Reward yourself. It will motivate you and help you stay focused.
- Follow through with sticking to your calendar. Avoid distractions.
- Take a look into the future. Have a visual of what it will mean for your business to fulfill your goal. How might accomplishing your goal impact your personal life, your employees and the community?
- Discipline will help in recuperating and fixing mistakes easily.
These are just a few tips to keep your business on track. Remember, there are multiple resources available in your community to help you grow your business and strengthen areas you need improvement in. Don’t be afraid to seek out those resources.