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How a review of 2015 can help you set effective goals

By this time next year, where do you see yourself?

Perhaps it is having achieved a certain level of success, or to be in a different financial position. Or maybe it is having taken steps on that career ladder. Whatever your aims may be, effective goal setting is one of the best ways to keep on track.

Energy, determination and focus are all attributes that can come from knowing where you are headed – your end destination. And don’t be afraid to say it out loud! That can be really powerful too. When did you last try it? Your goals and aspirations are not something to hide away in a drawer, you need to live and breathe them. Reading them out regularly is a great way to do that.

In the same way, having clear goals will act like your roadmap, making sure every action (both large and small) is taking you in the right direction. Even the biggest mountain can be conquered a step at a time and by breaking down your overall target into bite-sized chunks you’ll be fuelling your motivation. Take it week-by-week, and month-by-month so you can see the real-time progress you are making, which in turn will help you keep up momentum.

Working in the sales and marketing environment goes hand-in-hand with having targets and setting goals.  And whether you use ‘S.M.A.R.T.’ goals (ones that are Specific, Measureable, Attainable, Relevant, Timely), or any other method, remember that the best resource you have at your fingertips is your own experience.

There will be so much you can pull from 2015. Whether you’re after leads, revenue, deals or something else – you will be giving yourself a head start.

So before starting on your goals for 2016, take a look back over the last twelve months. Think about the facts and figures, look for trends and patterns, and see what other learnings there are that may help you in the year ahead. Here are 3 questions to get you started:

What did you deliver month by month, week by week across 2015?

Let’s get down to the nitty-gritty - the all important numbers! Make sure you have all your figures and know how you did.

How do the figures measure up against your original target?

Compare these to your original target, again month by month, week by week across 2015. There really is no hiding here. Lay it all out. Does anything jump out at you?

What is the data telling you?

Analyse the trends. How did your goals match up to reality? Were they realistic? What other factors played a part in your success? What can you learn from your 2015 goal setting? Anything you would change, looking back?

Now it’s time to get something down on paper, safe in the knowledge that with these detailed observations up your sleeve, you’ll be in a far better position to begin to shape your 2016 performance.

This post was originally published on the Lead Forensics blog, to view and download the Essential Checklist for setting goals for 2016 here