Article by Jane Tweedy, Business Advisor, Western Sydney Business Centre

How are your 2017 New Year’s resolutions going? Many people don’t last until the end of January, so how can we turn resolutions into a success? By implementing SMART Goals and action plans!


When setting your business goals it is a good idea for a small business owner to first consider their family and lifestyle goals, and the time they have to run a business and live life. Conflicts can lead to a feeling of disappointment in all areas of life. Know your ‘why’, it can get you through tough times.


For goals to be SMART they should be:

S – Specific, significant, simple to understand: Setting a goal to make more money is weak, as a $1 more in 12 months would be a technical success, when we may have intended to double profit in 6 months.

M – Measurable, meaningful, motivational: Without the right measure how will we know if we meet our goal? For instance, going to the gym 3 times a week is measurable, but is it the right measure? Ask, what would it look like if I achieved that (remember going doesn’t mean doing!)? Consider creating scales if no obvious numerical measure.

A – Achievable, agreed, action-oriented: Although it is beneficial to set at least one ‘WAG’ (wildly audacious goal), as they lead to the biggest changes in our lives, goals ultimately need to be achievable. A WAG for a non-runner may be to run a specific marathon in 2 years. It may be achievable, but only with an action plan to support it.

R – Realistic, results-oriented: As you can see by the meanings, this links to the A e.g. achievable and results-oriented versus action-oriented and realistic.

T – Time-constrained, timely: Set deadlines and include both some short and long term goals.


Once you’ve created SMART goals check to make sure they don’t conflict with your personal goals, and combined are a stretch but are achievable. Set priorities, sub goals and action plans to achieve. If you need help with goal setting and action planning for your business, please contact us to see an advisor.