These tips from industry experts will help you come up with achievable goals for your business.
You’ve finally developed your business idea. Congratulations! The next important step: defining realistic targets that let you focus on the things that matter and gives you a bigger picture of what your business can achieve.
We talk to branding, management, and operations experts to get their insights on how to set milestones and small business goals. They share these questions you can use as guide.
How does your business stack up against industry benchmarks? Having a solid idea of your business’s potential for success will help you determine where your business stands and what goals should be in place.
To understand your market size, also known as “size of prize”, you will need to:
Knowing your target market is important in determining your sales and promotional tactics before you can even dive into costing and operations.
“For example, if you have a café that caters to millennials, the best way to reach them is through social media,” explains Sabrina Alleje, a marketer of 12 years. “[You can also do a] pop-up booth at events that target the same market for sampling, possible flyers with a menu, and calling card-size coupons for a return visit treat,” she illustrates. Knowing the size of the market and the portion that you can serve can help you calculate realistic targeted sales.
According to Gil Jocson, founding president of Verasie Research and Management Consultancy and part-time Management professor at the University of Asia and the Pacific, you should ensure that your product or service solves a problem that your desired market has. Doing this will enable you to determine and consider other necessary elements such as: the number and competencies of the required initial staff; the dynamics and size of area to cover; the current industry landscape and its potential for future growth and sustainability; and the present competitors that may pose high risk.
“Any new business venture must have the right mix of all these elements, which can only be achieved through in-depth knowledge and study of the market, the industry, the product-service, and the customer or client,” Jocson notes.
Having defined whom the business is for and what you need, you should now sit down and assess how much you’ll be investing in the business to make this happen. Pinning down how much the business will need and how much you currently have is key to get the business running.
“The size of your capital matters,” says Jocson. “In any new business venture, money talks. Often, limited resources would mean limited operations.”
To know your capital, you’ll need to calculate for the following:
If this is all a bit intimidating to you, it’s best to consult a seasoned entrepreneur, business coach, or accountant to help you out.
It really depends what your business is and what your targets are. A good timeline to be guided by is three to six months for visioning and conceptualizing, specifically if you are coming up with a physical store, advises Jessica Tan, a leasing and operations executive. This stage can take a year or more if your business has more technical requirements.
Another three to four months should be devoted to processing documents and construction of the brick-and mortar-store, as well as preparation for opening day. “The entire process takes roughly a year, but it can be shortened to six to eight months, depending on a variety of industry factors,” says Tan.
With enough knowledge of the industry, of your business requirements, and of the resources you need, you’ll be well on your way to developing a good business plan that can achieve realistic milestones. Good luck!
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