Setting goals yourself as the business owner is the best way to gain focus on your vision, but ask yourself this question: are your goals relatable? Does your team understand your vision for the future of your company? Involving the people who are doing the work on a day-to-day basis not only gives you a working knowledge of whether your goals are realistic, but it can also mean that your team feel they have an important role to play in your business. Ask these questions for greater clarity and support from your employees:
1. What is it like to work here?
Because you created the company, your feelings about it will be from your perspective. Asking your team what they think and being open to an honest answer will help you focus on potential issues and risks that you might not necessarily see as clearly as a member of your team might.
2. Which customer loves us most and why?
Focusing on your strengths helps you hone your skills and can help you become the market leader in your field. Clarify with your team what you are good at from customer feedback and work together to do more of it. You might even want to ask what complaints say about your product or service, and how you can improve that way too.
3. Which supplier loves us most and why?
This is similar to why customers love you. Are you clear on your requirements, and do you pay on time? That makes you a customer worth doing business with, and that in turn adds to the smooth running of your work. Your team will know this, and again will be able to set goals for improvements in supplier relations.
4. What is the best thing about what we do?
This is the chance for people to articulate all the things that work well and how you can set goals to enhance the working of the company. It can also give them an opportunity to reflect on their part in doing what you do best.
5. What would make the business better?
This follows on from the fourth question. It empowers your team to get really clear on improvements to the company and their role in making that happen. They can set personal goals for their own development, and What skills/knowledge would most help us improve what we do?
6. Where do you see us in 5 years time?
Asking for input on strategic goals for overall business growth and advancement can bring up surprising ideas that you may not have thought of before. It also gives your team an opportunity to see how their role fits in with your vision.
7. What skills/knowledge would most help us improve what we do?
This question will really help your team uncover how they can improve in their own work, and how they can enhance their own careers in the company as well as advancing the objectives of the business as a whole.
Of course, all this assumes that you will genuinely listen to what your team has to say, and that you will act on their ideas and opinions. Take time to absorb this powerful input and set your own goals for doing more of what you are good and improving your working practices for better business growth.
Do you want help with goal-setting? Download our 24-hour action plan for getting where you want to go and creating the time to get there.