The Australian Small Business Blog

Saturday, November 06, 2010

Using Life Goals to Design Your Business

How do you set your business goals? Do you, for example, take your current sales figure and say I want to double it in 5 years? Do you say I want it to be in 3 states or 3 countries in 5 years? There is nothing inherently wrong with such goals, but it is really putting the cart before the horse.

If you intend to double your sales in 5 years, what impact will that have on your business, and more importantly, your role in it? Will this mean more staff you have to manage? Longer hours for you? More stress?

With a goal of a wider geographical expansion of your business, more travel and more time away from home will be required.

Perhaps these are not issues for you, and you thrive on such challenges and you love to travel, but will you always feel that way as you get older and your family situation changes? Whether these are issues or not for you, it just makes sense to think how you would like you life to look in your future and design your business around it.

So before you set your business goals, it is important to consider your life goals. Looking 5 years ahead, you may decide that you want a focused effort to set your business up, so that after that you can get others to operate it for you so you can spend more time with your family. You may want to retire in 5 years, or sell the business so you can travel.

Alternatively, you may want to work from home so you can be with your children or work while they are at school. You may be looking towards the time when they leave school which will give you the opportunity to put more effort in your business or just to travel so you business needs to be on autopilot.

The second step is to answer the question how do you see your business contributing to these goals. You may wish your business to fund a particular lifestyle. If the desired lifestyle is lavish, the business commitment in time is likely to be demanding which may conflict with the lifestyle desired. What compromises might need to be made?

These decisions should be made with your family so that they will then support you in achieving your business goals.

Once you have decided on your life goals, it is then possible to place your business goals within that context. How much money you want to make. How many hours a day and days a week you want to work. How much leave you want to take each year. What role do you want to take in the business? For example, do you want to get off the tools?

When you design your business around your life goals, you will be able to retain your enthusiasm which will ensure that you will achieve your goals.

May Your Business Be - As You Plan It.

Over to You. What do You Think? Post Your Comments Below.

Dr Greg Chapman is the Director of Empower Business Solutions and The Australian Business Coaching Club and is Australia's Leading Advisor on Emerging Businesses and provides Coaching and Consulting advice to Australian Small Business Owners in Marketing & Business Strategies Planning & Systems. He is also the author of The Five Pillars of Guaranteed Business Success and Price: How You Can Charge More Without Losing Sales.

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The Australian Small Business Blog


Wes Towers said...

I do believe that your business goals would always have something to do with your life goals. They should be dependent on each other because goals for your business are usually made because you want your life to prosper. Interdependence is the key in this.

Thanks for the post, Greg.

Nick said...

I have recently made some distinctions with goals. Most people are chasing "having" or "doing" goals. Like getting the money to buy their dream car or taking a holiday to France for a month. Yet, about only %10 of our happiness comes from material things
What about the idea of "creating" or "being" goals? A creating goal could be directly related to improving business. And "being" goals could be "mindfulness" when dealing with customers. Goals we can attain and practice daily.


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Dr. Greg Chapman is also the author of
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