20 Dec Setting Goals for 2018
You already know that goal setting is a proven way to bring success to your business. We’ve all heard the adages such as “Failing to plan means planning to fail.” While that may be a bit dramatic, the most successful business leaders and entrepreneurs have a method for planning and goal setting, and so should you! In this post, we give you some quick and easy ideas to set goals for your craft business in 2018; you’ll also find some great resources for getting started.
Methods of goal-setting
One of the most common methods for setting your goals is to envision your life and desired outcomes in a given time frame, and then work backward to determine the steps necessary to get there. In this exercise, we recommend starting with a 10-year vision plan, then working backward to outline your 3-year goals as well as your 1-year goal. From there, you create an action plan for the next year with SMART goals.
SMART goals are SPECIFIC, MEASURABLE, ATTAINABLE, RELEVANT, and TIME-Bound. For example, “Sell more of my inventory” isn’t a SMART GOAL, but “Sell 25 units of Fancy Felt squares by end of Q2, 2018” IS: at the end of Q2, you will clearly know if you hit that goal.
One pitfall we see often with clients and prospects is an unrealistic match between goals and budget. Of course, everyone wants to sell one million dollars worth of product, but if you have a meager budget of only $5K per year to spend on marketing, you will have a difficult challenge in front of you. You should be prepared to spend a minimum of 7-10% of your gross sales on marketing – more if you’re in startup mode and nobody knows about your brand or your products.
Get Some Traction:
At our agency, we ascribe to the goal setting strategies outlined in the book Traction by Gino Wickman. It might seem like a dry read at first, but once you grasp the basic foundation of the EOS system (which stands for Entrepreneurial Operating System), your team will have a shared language about your “VTO,” “rocks” and “accountability” and we find that it helps keep us on track toward our goals. There is even a format for regular meetings and other tools to help you form a complete goal-setting plan. Traction also works within the 10-year/3-year/1-year framework.
Vision planning is another helpful exercise many creative people love. In this exercise, you actually write out a lengthy narrative describing in great detail the future you want. If, for example, your goal was to be a successful craft book author, your narrative might start out like this:
“My watch says it’s almost noon on Monday January 18th, 2020. I’m poised at the AFCI show in booth 400 waiting for the book signing to start. As I run my fingers across the cover, I’m pleased with how the cover art turned out and my photo seems to make me look 10 years younger! Oh! People are starting to line up. One woman approaches with a big smile to tell me that my machine quilting book has helped make her more productive.”
Entrepreneurs who swear by this visioning exercise report that their narratives can extend up to 10 pages and span personal and professional goals for the year they are describing. Other proponents of visioning exercises claim that brain patterns can be activated by visualizing outcomes and that scribing your intentions can help solidify those neurological connections.
Creative vision boards are another tool that I highly recommend for crafty business professionals. This method allows us to express our goals and visions in a visual way. The basic concept is to find or make visual representations of what your goals should be for the year. Prominently display your vision board in your office or creative space where you can be reminded of your goals every time you see it. This article from Huff Post describes this method in greater detail.
Looking for a ready-made tool to help you with your goal-setting for 2018? We love the Jessica Swift 2018 goal and intention kit recommended by Business of Craft Podcast guest, Lindsey Rae of Sew to Grow. If you’re more of a technology person, an app like Goals on Track might be a great way to input your 2018 goals and have the accountability right on your smartphone. In addition to adhering to the SMART goals framework, GoalsOnTrack can break down long-term goals into milestones or sub-goals, and organize them into your own categories. The app costs $68 per year for the full feature set.
Whether you decide to go with the app, design an elaborate vision board, write a lengthy narrative or if you just pull out your pencil and paper and sketch out three or four bullet points you’ll work on next year, goal setting for your future can help you make 2018 your best business year ever.
If you find our insights useful, contact Leanne@stitchcraftmarketing.com to learn how we can help you grow your craft business.