Are Your Ear Muffs On?

setting-goalsHow well do you hear when your ears are covered? As we endure these cold winter days – are you listening or are you intent in trudging along with status quo? Perhaps you wear hearing aids and realize how much conversation you miss when you don’t have them in. The same is true with your customers. Are you really listening to what makes them buy from you? Do they have wants or needs that you could adjust your business services to meet? It is less costly to nurture your existing customer base rather than go out and find new customers.

With January marking the start of a new business year, there is never a better time to set goals for you and/or your company during the upcoming year. With new goals in mind, talk to your customers. Every business owner should have goals set in order to achieve success.

Setting goals can follow any number of different processes, however it is important to have short term and long-term goals, along with a path of how you plan on getting there. Not only is it important to look at your processes and internal operations, but also forecast sales, how to grow your current customer base and develop new business. Remember that the biggest part of arriving at your destination is knowing which roads to travel to take you there.

Identify your goals. These should be long term, as well as short term goals. Create a project timeline and assign tasks with outcomes and responsible staff. You may have a new service to offer current customers, but don’t have a way to reach out. Create a plan to accomplish that process and forecast sales expectations to go with the plan.

Write down your goals. Putting pen to paper, or marker to the white board makes it real for all to see. If employees are part of the vision for growth, they have more of a buy in to help you achieve the goal. Regular progress updates allow everyone to share in the success of the group effort. Be sure to include both short-term and long-term goals and by all means, cross them off when you accomplish them!

This process demonstrates success and will help the team to feel the sense of accomplishment with the overall company direction. Ultimately the workplace success and team buy in helps to make for a pleasant work environment.

Track your success. As you reach your goals don’t be afraid to celebrate. It can be something as simple as a free lunch, a hand written thank you, a gift card or maybe an extra bonus in the next month’s check. It is important for your employees to see that not only is what they are doing making a difference in the company, but that they will be rewarded when the company succeeds as a whole. By tracking the goal, it becomes more exciting to see that goals are being met.

So TAKE the earmuffs off and put your hearing aids in. LISTEN to your customers and your employees. HEAR what they are telling you. ACT when possible to adjust services to meet their needs. MAKE your company a place where employees want to come to work. ACHIEVE sales success through expanding your offerings to current customers and REACH new markets. BE REALISTIC in setting goals and CELEBRATE success.

We offer a business evaluation and recommendation package. To learn more, email us or call 724-612-0755. Wishing you the best in 2018!

About the author: Autumn Edmiston is the CEO and owner of the Edmiston Group. The Edmiston Group is a multifaceted Pittsburgh based marketing consulting firm providing senior level marketing management services to businesses and non-profit organizations on a short or long term basis. Core areas of service are business development, marketing, strategic planning and public relations. The Edmiston Group has consistently delivered and implemented real-world, proven business marketing ideas and strategies for business.