We often find ourselves feeling disappointed when we realise that we really won’t be able to achieve our goals. The last quarter is around the corner and when you take into account holidays, it’s not long until 2021 is over. However, I would encourage you to consider any missed goals as opportunities to make your business stronger and start by pinpointing what went wrong. Here are the top 5 things which cause corporate goals to be missed. Address these, and you are on the path to never missing your business goals again.
(1) Under investing in the right areas
Achieving goals like revenue growth, customer acquisition, expansion and so on will mean spending money. Too often I see companies underestimate the spend they need or misallocate where investment is needed. For example, if you need to hire, make sure you understand the full costs and timeline to do this. If you need marketing investment, have an informed way to decide what your cost of acquisition and return on ad spend will be.
(2) Poor communication of targets to employees
Your team should not only be fully aware of your goals, but also feel vested and have ownership for achieving the goals. Use incentive plans to align pay and performance to those goals and include all employees, not just sales staff. This is necessary to focus the efforts of your team and should include both long term and short term incentives.
(3) Setting goals which didn’t incorporate a solid understanding of your customers
I recommend having a customer centric business, where your customer is front and centre of all your decisions, from product development to marketing to channel strategy. Collect information such as voice of customer data or customer performance indicators and then use the insights from this to inform your goals when you set them.
(4) Under estimating the myriad complexities and inter dependencies
In order to achieve ambitious goals, there will be a chain reaction on various areas of your company, such as operations, supply chain, product development or sales. It's critical to understand fully when you set goals what these inter dependencies are and then to focus on solving any big problem areas which will stand in your way. So, let’s say your goal is sales growth, you may also need to consider changing where and how you operate in order to be at the right capacity and scale to meet the increased demand.
(5) Not tracking and monitoring progress regularly throughout the year
Once you set your goals, track the right KPIs (key performance indicators) which allow you to regularly understand what progress has been made and by whom. Also, very importantly, use this as an opportunity to pivot and make changes if needed in order to keep on track.