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Business Goals: 5 Tips for Q1 Planning

Another year has come and gone, so now is a good time to review where we’ve been and start thinking about the future. How you do in the first quarter of the year can have a big impact on the rest of the year, so it is important to plan ahead and have a clearly defined vision going forward. Even if you aren’t the type to make “New Year’s Resolutions,” now is still a good time to set priorities and strategize to meet specific business goals.

Get Everyone on the Right Page

The biggest key to a fast and efficient start in Q1 is alignment. It is vital for all teams to be aligned in terms of priorities and direction. If your goal is to reach a specific audience or market vertical, then that should be who your salespeople are targeting, where your marketing budget is allocated, and where your partners should be targeting. When teams don’t understand your goals, it inevitably leads to wasted time, money, and effort. In contrast, uniting your company towards a common goal not only improves efficiency but helps to make people feel more connected and confident in their roles, which is good for morale.

Establish a Clear Roadmap

All good plans should list the main goals and the ways one can attain them. Do some brainstorming and determine what your biggest goals are for the coming year, then break them down into smaller, more manageable sections. This not only establishes a clear long-term vision for the company but also sets expectations for how those goals can be achieved. Too often, business goals are made so vague that people will have no real plan for how to achieve them. Creating a roadmap circumvents this problem by not just creating big goals, but also breaking them down into smaller objectives.

Be Specific in Your Goal Setting

One of the main reasons that New Year’s Resolutions tend to fail is that they’re often much more difficult to measure or properly evaluate. Someone will say that they want to “get better” at something without defining what “better” looks like, which makes it harder to know when you’ve succeeded and robs you of the satisfaction of making progress. Whether you’re dealing with personal or business goals, it is almost always better to have quantifiable objectives. Instead of “Increasing sales lead conversions,” say that you’ll increase them by 5%. Set hard goals and due dates wherever possible, but always remember to be realistic and only set goals that are tough but still possible.

Do Some Customer Analysis

Customer behavior is changing constantly and there is no guarantee that the same strategies that served you one year will work in the new year. This has always been the case, but it’s been even more true due to the COVID-19 pandemic over the past few years, as we’ve seen massive disruptions in consumer behavior and new methods for reaching out to customers. Companies need to look at their target audience and determine if any new and worthwhile trends are taking hold, ensuring that they don’t miss out on an opportunity to transition, grow, and better meet customer needs. Obviously, you’ll want to stick with your most tried-and-true methods, but you should always look for the newest approaches that can help you optimize your success.

Aim To Be More People-Oriented

The last year saw a wave of employees leaving their jobs in droves as they went in search of jobs that better meet their specific lifestyle and personal needs. This trend is likely to continue going into 2023, so business leaders need to prioritize the people they have left and do what they can to make them feel appreciated and supported. To achieve this, leaders should have a sit-down with their staff and listen to all of their ideas, suggestions, and concerns. The reason why the “Great Resignation” caught so many leaders off guard is that few employers understood what their people were looking for, falling back on the same cliché workplace benefits rather than taking stock of what they were actually looking for. Not all of your worker’s suggestions might turn out to be actionable but having a sit-down with them can still give you some much-needed insight that can help you move in the right direction going into 2023.

About the author

Author profile

Isaac Isaiah Carr, JD MBA is founder, CEO, and business attorney of CCSK Law, a kingdom-driven law firm. Launched 5 years ago, CCSK Law grew from a single member firm to a 10 person team. His areas of focus include business formation and strategy, contract writing, sales, and corporate finance. Often referred to as an entrepreneur with a law degree, Isaac is able to offer business strategy utilizing creative solutions guided by legal and accounting principles that are then well executed in law. Experience in a variety of industries including real estate, hospitality, automotive, e-commerce, professional services, and healthcare. Successfully negotiated and closed multi-million-dollar transactions, ranging from $1.8M to $10M, with private investors, corporate leaders, and municipalities. Ultimately, he builds sustainable structures for systematic growth. Graduated from Valparaiso University Law School summa cum laude with his Juris Doctorate as well as the AACSB-accredited Valparaiso University School of Business with his Master’s in Business Administration. Passionate about education in all forms, Isaac is involved in the nonprofit organizations of SCORE, Neighbors’ Educational Opportunities (NEO) and New Vistas High School, ValpoNext, and Music Neighbors.

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