Thursday, July 16, 2009

Reaching your business goals in 2009

The first half of 2009 is over and we are well into the summer months.
This is a great time to review your business goals for the year and your results for the first half of the year. Are you on track? If so, great! Pat yourself on the back. If not, Why? What do you need to do to get back on track and ensure success for the balance of 2009?

I’ve had many discussions with business owners and entrepreneurs in small to medium sized companies and some are struggling to find new leads, close sales, and grow their business. In fact, some are losing market share or seeing sales decline, and aren’t sure what to do. When I ask if they’re experts in their field or whether they have a plan, I get all types of answers from, “I’m not sure what to do”, to, “I’m not smart enough”, or even worse, “It’s the market’s fault”.

If you’re not an expert in your field and fully confident of your products and services, then your customers and potential customers will sense your weakness and not be motivated to purchase from you.

Many businesses are held back because key people in the organization lack the skills to manage effectively and deliver results or, they lack the ability to utilize new technologies like the internet to leverage their business.

To be a successful business in this challenging climate you must to continue to stretch yourself and learn new skills. You are the key to your own success! You need to have an open mind and become and expert in your field. And the only way to do this is to continue learning and growing. Here’s how:

1. Write down the top ten must improve areas of your business for 2009.

2. Now divide the top ten in to the following areas of Sales, Marketing, and Operations.

3. You will notice that one area will become painfully obvious in that you need more work to do.

4. Now go buy a couple of books to read in that obvious area. (Possibly Marketing).

5. Monday to Friday get up early every morning or shut off the TV early at night and read every day for one hour.

Five days a week for one hour. Write down the things you like and implement them as soon as possible.

5 hours x 26 weeks = 180 hours dedicated to learning.

To really achieve any goal or to learn a meaningful new skill, we need to discipline ourselves to stay on track until it’s accomplished. There are several ways to effectively track your goals.

•Keep a list and review your goals regularly, preferably daily

•Break down a goal into action steps

•Measure your results by establishing key performance indicators

•Set new goals and repeat the above

The investment in learning will pay multiple dividends for the balance of 2009 and help you to “Build your Business”.

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