When planning your entrepreneurial venture, I am sure you have been given a lot of advice on measuring your short-term and long-term goals and have a vision of the same order from here on. There can be a lot said about these goals and they all differ in different circumstances. But here are the three main important short-term goals that I advice the budding entrepreneurs to have in mind and in writing as they begin on the exciting path to entrepreneurship.
First Break Down your Ideas
When you dream of seeing your ideas as a product or service, it is most often very difficult to curb the flow of what can be done. The idea is great and the possibilities are ever-expanding; but these things are also most often the reason for a “multi-directional” start to try out all possibilities and see what works. Or simply many diversions and fewer results. Sure enough you want to make a million at least in the second year revenue cycle or at least some profits this year. Great, but first break it down even further. Focus on the first three months first. What do you want to achieve, how you want to achieve and what tools you need to get it done – but just the plan for the first three months.
Not Success Not Failure Just Get it Done
In most practical situations do not expect any success or failure in the first three months of your starting a venture. It is too short a time to evaluate if you are either. The focus must be on how you went about your plan. Analyze your time frame of achievement of the set goals. What went well and what did not, again it is not success or failure but the analysis on how you carried on the first steps and what you learnt from them matters most. Your focus should be on getting on the ramp, well begun is half done; there is a lot of truth in this saying! Now accordingly set course for the next breakdown of your plan.
Remember: your goals should always be measurable.
There is a lot around on the Web to learn on goal setting but some good influential message comes from the “Goal Setting Guru” Zig Ziglar. I suggest that read some good articles on goal setting and also see this 5 minutes video:
Now Fuel Motivation
Often the startup phase is the most daunting period of any ideas’ evolution. Doubts, fears and lack of a concrete turnaround often can weaken momentum of achievement. Most often failures or just giving-up happens at the start-up phase. Be prepared for this phase – seek motivation internally and externally. Depending upon what type of a person you are you may seek motivation from within or through a group of friends or an entrepreneurial circle.
Internal Motivation is what you can do yourself to bring out the best in you. It may be the challenge to meet the target goals for the week or the month, or some incentives that you look forward to (want a new car with your first year revenue? Better work for it now and meet your goals).
External Motivation comes through friends, co-workers, family or a think-alike group. Although networking can be very time consuming, it is a good idea to start upfront and fuel your motivation. A lot can be achieved when two or more minds think together and the earlier you begin the better it could be. Else seek a mentor or a coach who can guide you through the first steps on the entrepreneurial path which can often be jittery.
Needless to say whenever you focus on the short-term planning always keep the long-term goals in mind but note that the long-term goals reaching depends on the success of your short-term achievements and with the changes and success and failure in your short-term goals the long-term ones might most probably change. Focus on the short-term first, always.