It’s all well and good setting business goals, as we all so often do at the start of a new year. However, what’s just as important as the goal itself is figuring out how, exactly, you’re going to achieve it.
Writing down goals – committing them to paper and speaking them aloud – is a great place to start, yes. But between this initial action and the moment where you arrive at your business goal there are tons of tiny actions completed over a period of time which form the stepping stones or the rungs in the ladder to get you to where you want to be.
What, exactly, are these tiny actions? Well, it really depends on what the goal is. But, there are a few habits which, when incorporated into your routine, can help you to achieve your business goals – regardless of what they are.
5 habits to help you hit your business goal in 2023
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: networking is one of the most important things you can do to progress your career. Of course, you may be met with opportunities to establish and grow your business through having networked with industry peers, but there are plenty of other benefits that come from having a community within your industry, too.
Peers can provide support and important insider knowledge which could help with reaching your goal, and they can help to hold you accountable, too. I recommend connecting with someone who is also working on progressing their career or growing their business in 2023 to become accountability partners. Check in with one another regularly, and make sure the other person is on track to achieving their goal by forming and consistently performing helpful habits.
Where’s the best place to network? IRL events are great, if they’re common in your industry. If you work in the interiors industry, I recommend joining the Inside Stylists
community, where you can connect with other creatives. Otherwise, utilise social media. DM peers on Instagram to express your appreciation of their work, or search for relevant Facebook groups where people from your industry congregate.
2. Prioritise your wellbeing
It may seem counterproductive to prioritise anything besides work when you’re chipping away at a career goal but, for fear of sounding like a broken record, you do your best work when you’re feeling well. A lack of sleep or social life can hamper your ability to be creative, as can not nourishing or resting your body adequately. Therefore, I always recommend setting some healthy boundaries to ensure your wellbeing is taken care of and you arrive at your desk in the best possible mindset to work.
Some boundaries I have set:
• Movement, breakfast and coffee before I check my emails or sit down at my desk every morning.
• A nutritious lunch away from my desk.
• No emails or work of any kind once I’ve switched my laptop off for the evening.
• Regular family time with my daughters and husband.
These all help to ensure that when I do return to working towards my goals, I feel raring to go.
3. Develop your skill set
I’m a big advocate for constantly continuing education, whatever that looks like. It could be getting a degree, or simply teaching yourself how to use TikTok to progress your business. Regardless, not only does broadening your skillset allow you to increase your service offerings and potentially reduce the running costs of your business (if you learnt how to photograph your products, for instance), but it can also teach you a lot about yourself; what you enjoy, what you don’t, what you’re good at, what’s better to outsource, and so on. Learning can also be a great way to network.
Of course, there will be industry-specific skills that may be helpful for you to develop but, generally speaking, the following skills are beneficial for all business owners to have:
• Social media marketing (email marketing, too)
• Financial management
4. Break it down
If you revisit your business goal, or goals, for 2023 right now, it probably feels huge and overwhelming and possibly even completely unattainable. Right?
What makes big, scary, impossible-seeming goals achievable is when they’re broken down into tiny and very manageable daily tasks. Doubling your sales, for instance, may seem so far out of your reach right now. But, if, instead, you spent your days taking small actions, such as tweaking your marketing, collecting testimonials, connecting with influencers, improving your product, initiating collaborations, and so on, eventually, with the right action, you’ll arrive at your goal.
Bear in mind that the tiny tasks need to be so quick and so easy that they don’t overwhelm you into shunting them down your to-do list. A task may be to send an email, to Google search something, to make a phone call, to connect with someone on social media.
5. Get a mentor
When I started out as a self-employed stylist 20+ years ago I had no idea where to find, or how to secure, consistent work – never mind how much to charge when I eventually did get commissions. I didn’t have a vast network of freelance or self-employed peers, and hadn’t a clue how to build and grow a business. I’d have loved to have had a mentor to ask my many questions to, and to make navigating the world of being self-employed that little bit easier.
There are many great mentors out there who can help you to realise your goals and map out a realistic way to reach them – I recommend choosing someone who has specific experience within your industry, if possible.