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Episode 087: How I Determine my Yearly Business Goals

December 7, 2021

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I'm  Amanda — simplicity-focused content marketing strategist.  I'm here to help you fit your marketing into your business.

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Small biz ready to set goals, but unsure where to begin? Here's my entire process for setting yearly goals for a small business.

Setting Yearly Goals as a Small Business?

When it comes to setting yearly business goals, it can often feel like you’re pulling ideas out of thin air. Like you’re trying on goals for size to see how they fit. Maybe this year I’ll focus on building a course. Or, I’ll try and hit six figures in revenue. Or, I could potentially even possibly create a podcast!

Or, maybe you have a ton of really intentional ideas, but you struggle with putting too many goals onto your plate each year. Your goals list is so long that you have no idea where to focus your time and energy, and then you end up all over the place with your daily plans and your content.

If either of those scenarios feels familiar, you’re going to love this episode. I’m sharing my 6 steps for setting my yearly goals in my business. These steps will not only help you create intentional goals, but they will also help you created focused goals.

If you’re ready for 2022 to be your best year yet – let’s go ahead and dive in. You’re listening to Episode 087 of the Chasing Simple Podcast, and I’m your host – Amanda Warfield.


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Rather Read? – Here’s the Transcript!

*Just a heads up – the provided transcript is likely to not be 100% accurate.

When it comes to setting yearly business goals, it can often feel like you’re pulling ideas out of thin air. Like you’re trying on goals for size to see how they fit. Maybe this year I’ll focus on building a course or I’ll try and hit six figures in revenue, or I could potentially even possibly create a podcast. Or maybe you have a ton of really intentional ideas, but you struggle with putting too many goals onto your plate each year. Your goals list is so long that you have no idea where to focus your time and energy. And then you end up all over the place with not only your daily plans, but also your content. If either of those scenarios feels familiar, you’re going to love this episode.

I’m sharing my six steps for setting my yearly goals in my business. These steps will not only help you create intentional goals, but they also will help you create focused goals. If you’re ready for 2022 to be your best year yet, let’s go ahead and dive in. You’re listening to Episode 87 of the Chasing Simple Podcast. And I’m your host, Amanda Warfield.

The very first thing that I do when it comes to determine my yearly business goals is that I actually keep an ongoing goals list throughout the current year. So I’ve shared this before in the past, but I’m not a huge journaler. So whatever journal I have, I like to keep a journal handy so that I can get all my thoughts out.

Anytime. I feel like I need to just brain dump and I’ve got a lot of thoughts spinning, but I’m not a consistent every day I journal two or three pages. I’m just not that person. But I do always have a journal And on the very last page of every journal that I use, I tend really to not use more than one a year.

So at the very last page at my journal for whatever year it is, I always have a running goals list that I am constantly adding to now this list doesn’t mean that I’m going to try to achieve all of these things or that they’re even goals that’ll actually try for this next year, but I like to write down any ideas that I have so that when it comes time to figure out what my goal are for the next year, I have all kinds of things that I’ve already thought of that I can sift through so that I’m not starting from scratch because I want to make sure that whatever goals I have for the year, I want to make sure they’re really, really intentional. And if I sit down to a blank Power Sheets or whatever it is that you’re using to determine your goals, if I sit down to something blank and have to pull things out of thin air, it’s unlikely that my goals are actually going to be intentional.

But by having that space set aside specifically to write down potential ideas for the next year, I’m able to write down things that, come to me that solve a problem. I’m able to be in the middle of something and say, oh, well this is going to be the next step after I finished this. And I really love to do this and this would help solve whatever this problem is. Those are the kinds of things that I write down so that I know whatever I’ve got written on that spot. I know that it’s something that’s really, really intentional and will move my business forward, whether or not I choose it for the next year. So that’s a very first thing that I do every single year is the back of my journal. I just keep an ongoing list of potential ideas.

Now, when it comes time to actually sit down and say, okay, what are my goals for next year gonna be? After I’ve got that list. The next thing that I do is I look at where I am now. What are my current offers? What did I do in the back end of my business this year? What was my annual revenue and what was my goal? I have to know where I am in order to know how best to move forward. So I would this year sit down and say, okay, my current offers, I’ve got one-on-one consultation, I’ve got Club Content Batching. I’ve got my a Year End Preview Workshop. So on and so forth, I would write down all of those things and how much each one of those made. I would look at what was my goal for revenue and what did I make? What did I do? What kind of big projects did I actually accomplish this year? And also what were my goals this year? And did I accomplish them? Then once I’ve written that all down in one place, I evaluate what worked and what didn’t. So, which of these goals did I actually meet? How did I meet them? What worked to help me meet those goals? Which ones did I not meet? And why not? What was missing? And sometimes this can be; I kind of brain dump journal that out, right? What worked, what did not work? What do I feel really proud of this year? And what do I feel like is missing? And then I look at all of that, that I’ve already set aside. And then I’ll also see what is all my heart, what is something that maybe isn’t already written down or that I haven’t been working towards yet, but it’s something that I think I would really love to do this year. And I write all of that down and I gathered all together. And then I see where is there overlap? What might be possible for this year? What might I actually be able to accomplish? This way, I’ve narrowed down that giant list that I’ve kept throughout the year. And I said, what strategically can I actually get done? What strategically makes the most sense? Right. So I’ve, I’ve narrowed that list down.

And then I narrow my goals down. One more time by choosing four goals for the year, I choose a revenue goal. I choose a big dream, something that I really want to work towards, and that I would love to see happen in my business. Even if it’s something that this year may just be the first step for. I’ll come back to that in a second.

And then I also will set a goal around my main offer. And also had a behind the scenes goal. So the revenue goal, I feel like is pretty self-explanatory what revenue goal would you like to hit this year. Then the big dream goal. So for example, for my big dream goal for 2021 was to get an in-person speaking gig.

I just wanted to book one and that was my goal, And that may sound like something that’s not really a stretch goal, but I knew that in order to actually achieve that goal with booking an in-person speaking gig, I knew that there was a lot of buildup that I needed to do. I needed to really practice and hone my speaking skills, I needed to craft a really amazing presentation and I needed to build up my credibility in this industry.

And I knew that that was not going to be a quick and easy thing that I needed time. And so my goal for that, my it’s a big goal. It’s a big dream. I would love to move more into speaking in the future. But this year my goal was just to get one. And that was my big dream. So I highly encourage you to think what is my big dream? Maybe it’s hosting and planning your own retreat.

Maybe it won’t happen this year. Maybe that’s not a possibility. Maybe it’s not super realistic, but what steps do you need to take to work towards it and keep that goal in mind? Now my goal around my main offer tends to be things like how many clients I want, or how many new signups for Club Content, Batching, or whatever your main offer is. Give that a number goal. whether that’s a specific revenue amount or a specific number of signups or a specific number of clients, whatever the case may be, what is your main offer goal? Now if you don’t have a main offer just yet. That’s okay. Maybe your goal for that isn’t a number goal, it’s just simply getting it set up this year. Or maybe your main offer right now is just a freebie and that’s okay. Maybe you want a certain number of downloads on your freebie and that’s your main offer right now. Play around with that, whatever makes the most sense for your business, but your main offer goal would be number three.

And then finally a behind the scenes goal. Something that you’re doing on the back end of your business, that you know, is a big project that you know, is going to take some time.

For example, my big behind the scenes goal this year was to set up funnels. And I am still as I’m recording this at the end of October, I am still working on setting up these funnels. I have not knocked this goal out yet this year, but I’ve been chipping away at it all year long. Maybe your big behind the scenes school is a brand new website, new copy, new brand photos, new design, new everything, and you know, that’s going to take you in a lot of time. Maybe it is setting up your first set of freebies. Your behind the scenes goal will really depend on your business. Of course. But I would love for us to normalize that big projects, take time and not see us all continue to push through these things because this in years past, I would have said, okay, this is a goal for the quarter, and I’m going to get all my funnel set up in one quarter, but that’s just not realistic between marketing and admin and clients and all the other stuff that happens in a business. These, these behind the scenes projects, they do take time, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be working towards them. Quick recap, the four goals that I set in my business each year, a revenue goal, a big dream goal, a goal around my main offer. So I make sure to keep that in mind, because so often we can lose focus and then a behind the scenes goal. Those are the four after I’ve said those four, then I have to gut check myself.

Are they realistic? Do I have a plan to support them? And are they vanity metrics? So are they realistic at the beginning of 2021, I set a goal of a hundred thousand dollars in revenue. And within a month, I very quickly realized that, um, this probably isn’t truly a realistic goal and I didn’t have a plan in place that would actually support them. So I actually scaled back my revenue goal significantly for this year for 2021. So ask yourself, are they realistic? It’s okay to not reach the big, shiny number goal, or the big shiny whatever goal, as long as you have a realistic goal, because the next year you can move forward more and more and more. But business is in a straight line and things are going to go up and down. So make sure that you’re setting things that are realistic. 

Then the next part of that, do you have a plan to support them? So I realized that my big revenue goal that I originally said for this year, wasn’t realistic because I did not have a plan in place to support them. I didn’t have a true realistic plan that I knew that I could actually achieve as far as how many sales that I was going to reach to get there, or how much time I had or so on and so forth. You have to have a realistic plan in place to actually support those goals. And then are they vanity metrics? Here again, I found that the revenue goal that I set for myself was very much a vanity metric. I didn’t actually need to hit a hundred thousand to do what I wanted to do this year, but I wanted it because it felt like this big, shiny number.

Right. But it wasn’t actually what I needed, so it was just a vanity metric. Maybe when you set a goal around a big dream of yours or a goal around your main offer, maybe you say, okay, I want. This many people on my email list, or I want this many people on social media, or I want a reel to go viral. There’s all kinds of different things that we can set, but make sure that whatever goals you’re setting are actually going to do something for your business. You’ve only got four chances at these goals, right? If you’re you’re setting really intentional simplified goals and you follow this method that I’m doing, you’ve got four goals. If any of them are vanity metrics, they’re not actually moving your business forward.

So you want to make sure that every single goal is super, super intentional. And it’s not something where you are saying, okay, well, I want to get 500 new people on my email list this year. ‘ I want that many people on my email list instead. It’s a, okay. I need to get this many people on my email list through this specific opt-in because this opt-in has been intentionally created to lead them into this next thing. There’s gotta be a lot more to it than just, I want this many people on my email list. I want this many people on my social media.

So real quick to recap, before I give you your action step. First have a place where you have an ongoing goals list so that you already have ideas and plans and thoughts in place when it comes time to sit down and actually create your goals for the next year. Then look at where are you right now? What are your current offers? What did you do in the back end of your business this past year? What was your annual revenue. After that evaluate what worked and what didn’t, and also write down anything that may be on your heart and then look at all of this and see where the overlap is. Where do you see common themes? Where do you see common problems that you need to fix? Once you’ve got all that down and you’ve done some, some brain dumping, some flow of conscious, some journaling, whatever that looks like for you and whatever works best for you. Choose four goals, a revenue goal, a big dream goal, a goal around your main offer and a behind the scenes goal. And after you’ve done that go back and gut check yourself. Are those goals realistic? Do you have a plan in place to support them? And are any of them vanity metrics versus truly goals to move your business forward.

Now your action step for this week is to put a date on your calendar and block off a couple of hours to work on setting your goals. A lot of times, this is something we forget to do as CEOs in our business. We forget that we have to actually intentionally plan time to step back and look at where are we and where do we want to go? We have to step back and set goals because that’s how we guide our business to where we want it to go. If we just keep working constantly and we never take that time to sit back, you’re not steering the ship. You’re not steering your business. It’s just a floating along wherever it happens to go. So I want you to put a date on your calendar block off at least a couple hours, if not a whole day or two, to work on setting your goals for the new year.

And this week’s book recommendation is The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander. Now this book was so eyeopening because I knew that our, our justice system and a lot of our systems period in America, I knew that it was set up to suppress African-Americans, but I did not fully understand all of the different dynamics in place. I didn’t understand the full extent of how oppressive our system was and how that all worked in this book was such an eye-opener.

So I highly recommend that everyone go check that out because I understand so much better about not, how to fix it, of course, but why the oppression is so real and how seemingly. Innocuous things make a big difference. So I would highly recommend that everyone goes to check that out. It is a very, very, very informative read and also not a hard read.

So The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander, I will put a link to that in the show notes. And until next time, my friend, I hope that you will go out and uncomplicate your life in biz.


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