What is your single greatest business goal for 2022?
If you don’t know, it’s time to start thinking.
If you do know, it’s time to start planning.
For a lot of business owners, October isn’t exactly a time of new beginnings. There is a tendency to see this final quarter as our last big push for the year. We’re getting through hurricane season, wildfire season… preparing for the season of burst pipes and ice dam damage.
You might be fantasizing about taking a breath, taking a break and starting fresh. But if you’re like most business owners, setting a New Year’s resolution for your business is the furthest thing from your mind.
It shouldn’t be.
This is the perfect time to start planning for 2022.
You don’t have to create an in-depth business plan just yet. But you do need to have eyes on the future. Here’s why:
Why You Can’t Wait Until January
When I talk about your 2022 business goal, I am talking about your One Big Thing.
The One Big Thing (OBT) is the biggest move you can make over the course of the next year to accelerate your business growth. This OBT should be rooted in your company’s greatest strengths and current opportunities.
Maybe you want to revamp your entire marketing strategy. Or perhaps you want to introduce a new service that could double your revenue. Maybe you’re realizing your mission, focus and company culture needs an overhaul.
Now, the thing about an OTB is that it takes time to pay off. The effort you put in today won’t yield results for three, six, or even twelve months.
If you wait until January to identify your one biggest goal for 2022, guess what happens?
You spend January identifying the goal and creating a strategy to reach it. You spend February sharing your vision with your team and gathering their input. By the time Q1 is up, you’ve only just gotten started. Soon, you realize that your 2022 goal is going to have to be a 2023 goal.
Start now. Get clarity for yourself, share your vision with your team and start setting things in motion. By the time January rolls around, you and your staff will already be moving toward that One Big Thing.
How to Identify Your Top Priority for Business Growth in 2022
Your big goal for the new year could be one of many things. A few common OBTs for growing businesses include:
- Implementing a new, more efficient system
- Expanding the team
- Expanding the territory
- Optimizing marketing strategy
- Improving client services
- Revamping mission, vision and/or company culture
A SWOT analysis can help you focus your attention on the areas where you are most likely to see the biggest payoff. If you haven’t done a SWOT analysis before, I’ve created a free tool that can help you generate one.
A few other things that will help you zero in on your priorities for 2022 include:
- Asking your mentor or advisory board for their input.
- Inviting input from employees — particularly those who have demonstrated an active interest in contributing to business growth.
- Reviewing client feedback to learn more about your strengths and weaknesses, as well as their values and unmet needs.
- Asking yourself:
- “What is the greatest obstacle to our growth?”
- “How can we tap into our strengths to overcome that obstacle?”
- “What opportunity are we neglecting?”
- “How can we build on our greatest strength?”
- “What do the numbers say about our performance? Should we focus on increasing leads? Improving lead close rates? Developing more efficient systems to increase our profit margins?”
Odds are good that choosing one central mission for 2022 will be the hardest part of this process. You probably have several goals for your business.
Don’t worry. Once you identify your top goals, look at each one and ask one more question:
“When we succeed at this goal, how will that success set us up to attain other goals?”
For example, implementing a new system will also have the effect of improving customer service, boosting morale and increasing profit margins.
Consider choosing the goal that comes with the widest ripple effect.
The Steps You Need to Take Right Now
So you’ve nailed down your OBT… now what? How do you set yourself up to hit the ground running in 2022?
Pinpointing the goal is really the biggest challenge. Your next step is to move toward it.
First, write it down. Be as specific as you can. How many new team members do you want to bring on and by when? What numbers do you want to see from your new marketing strategy?
You get the idea.
Then, communicate your goal to the entire team. Make sure everyone knows what the big priority is for 2022 and how their role plays into the overall vision.
Once everybody is on board, you can start strategizing together. You may even be able to start putting those strategies in motion before the next quarter.
But even if all you can manage to do in these next couple months is to identify your goal, commit to your goal in writing and share it with your team, you’re in a much better position than you would have been if you’d waited until January to decide on that next big step for your business.
Just get moving now. This time next year, you’ll be so glad you did.