We all know the importance of setting good financial goals for your business. Making a profit and decreasing expenses is at the top of your to-do list. These types of goals are usually the focus of new businesses. As they should be. Financial goals help to drive the business and keep the doors open.
But financial goals aren’t the only goals that you need. Focusing on finances solely can lead to failure in other areas of your business. It can be similar to not seeing the forest for the trees.
Non-financial business goals are also sometimes known as non-financial metrics. It’s critical to set non-financial goals for your business for the sake of the overall health of the company. These types of goals are important for a variety of reasons. Firstly, they provide a more comprehensive view of a company’s overall performance and help to align employees and leadership around a shared vision.
They can also help to drive innovation and growth. Some non-financial business goals cause the need for change in order to be met. Many of these changes can only be done through innovation. Having non-financial business goals can also improve employee engagement and satisfaction.
Finally, non-financial metrics can be useful in identifying areas where a company may be falling short. A healthy profit and loss statement may not always be the best indicator of the health of a business. Non-financial goals can help entrepreneurs and business owners see the areas where their businesses are weak. Overall, non-financial goals help to ensure that a company is not solely focused on financial performance. But, that it is also considering the well-being of its employees, customers, and the community.
Here are six non-financial goals to set to help you and your business succeed.
1. Hire Great Employees
Unless you’re a solopreneur doing everything by yourself, you’ll need to pay attention to who you hire. Bringing in employees who will do mediocre work, or worse, steal from your business, can be not only financially damaging but emotionally devastating.
Deciding to hire the best employees you can afford is a decision you won’t regret. It can be hard to find good employees, but it’s worth it.
It’s important to keep in mind that your best employees might be looking for perks besides pay. As a small business owner, you might be able to offer things that larger corporations can’t. Flexible scheduling, a relaxed dress code, work-from-home policies, and other employee-friendly policies, are just some ways you might win over potential applicants. If you’re creative, you may find that you can find great people who are looking for more than just a paycheck.
2. Keep Great Employees
Just as important as hiring great employees is the ability to retain a great staff. While it’s inevitable that there will be some resignations even in the best of workplaces, your goal should still be to retain as many employees as possible. Part of this effort should include providing proper training for new employees, developing employees in their current roles, and identifying paths for promotion for those who are interested in changing roles.
3. Keep Making a Great Product
If you’ve hired great people and you’re keeping them on staff, you might begin to focus on the bottom line. However, it’s important to not ease up on producing a quality product or service. Unfortunately, this is where many businesses begin to lose sight of and lose customers. Skimping on the core essentials of what you do can cause you to lose the trust of the public. Your customers need to know that every time they choose to do business with you, your product is going to be consistently great.
It shouldn’t be a guessing game as to whether or not the service may or may not be good. If you’ve changed suppliers to a cheaper vendor, the customer shouldn’t be able to tell. The end product should still be just as good as it was before.
4. Always Know What Customers Are Saying About You
Marketing may be outside your comfort zone, but you need to know how your business is perceived. While you could hire a marketing expert, you can also do some basic online sleuthing yourself. Take a look at the online reviews for your business and build a plan based on what you find.
To keep up with what customers are saying about you, make sure you have business profiles on all relevant sites. If you sell on Amazon, you should keep a notification of reviews. If you are a food business, restaurant, or any other local business, you should do the same for sites like Yelp.
However, if your business has no reviews, this indicates a need to build a plan to conduct a few surveys. If your business has negative reviews, this indicates a potential need to take action on the content posted.
5. Win an Award in Your Industry
There are several ways to know if you are good at what you are doing. An easy way is to look at your profit and loss statement each month. However, there is one non-financial way to validate your business’s success and impact while giving you something to celebrate. That is being voted or awarded “the best” by your peers or customers.
Winning an award can bring a lot of benefits to your business. Besides having something to display, it can increase visibility and credibility. This will undoubtedly help attract new customers and partners. Awards can also be a great way to motivate and recognize your employees. When employees know that they are working for a quality company, it helps build a positive company culture. Also, winning an award can be a great way to differentiate your business from competitors.
Winning an award is a great short-term or medium-term business goal as well. This is because you do not need to have an established business to be recognized for your work. A “best”, “top”, or “voted #1” badge helps to set yourself apart in the marketplace. Overall, winning an award can help to boost your business’s reputation, and to drive growth and success.
6. Give Back to the Community
There are many ways your business can get involved in the community. Providing company-sponsored service opportunities for employees is one possibility. This is a gesture of goodwill that can enhance the reputation of your business. It can also help build pride in your employees, knowing that their employer also values things that aren’t tied to profits.
Community involvement can also take the form of financially supporting worthy causes, such as schools or other non-profit groups. Your business could also get involved in the community by donating products to a worthy cause.
7. Streamline All Processes
Developing processes can take time, but processes should become second nature to understand and communicate with your employees and customers. Eventually, it should be a goal to streamline your processes and make them the best they can be. An example of a streamlined process could be customer returns. How these will be handled, who will be responsible for them, and managing frequently asked questions should be a simple, easy process.
8. Stay in Love With What You Do
Success in your business flows out from you as you lead your business. Attitude is contagious, and so is motivation.
So what’s love got to do with it?
The most personal goal of any entrepreneur should be to love what you do. After all, isn’t your passion and drive what caused you to become an entrepreneur in the first place?
The life of an entrepreneur is unique. It can be difficult, with seasons of fatigue and uncertainty. Without punching someone else’s clock, there are a lot of challenges. Entrepreneurs wear many different hats. As a result, you may often feel pulled in many different directions.
Financially, it can take a lot of faith to get through the startup phase or an economic slump. It takes faith that things will turn around.
Working all the hours that are needed to succeed can put an entrepreneur at a unique risk of developing burn out.
While it’s important to have a growth mindset, it’s also important to monitor your health and well-being. Take steps to prevent burnout if you feel disengaged from your work. Remember why you started your side hustle and how far you’ve come with it. Give yourself recognition for how far you’ve already come. Reflect again on your dreams, and you can find joy in your small business.
9. Improve Company Culture
A positive company culture is a key factor in retaining top talent. This workplace is best equipped to retain great employees and permits them to do their best work. So, assess what type of company culture you have now. How could it be better? What is already working?
Create development opportunities for those who want to stay with the company long-term. Offer incentives to all employees to let them know their work is appreciated. Make your workplace welcoming to people of all ages and backgrounds. These are just a few things you can do to create a positive company culture.
10. Continue Dreaming Big
One of the top goals for any new small business is to survive the first few years to be able to celebrate the first five years of business. It’s a major milestone!
But, looking beyond this, what are your other plans for growth? If there were no limitations, how big would you dream? What kind of collaborations would you develop? What other businesses could you collaborate with? Who would you envision using your product or service? Don’t be afraid to dream big about creating a new product, starting a new service, or networking to expand your business.
Creating non-financial goals can put a small business on track for success. Recruiting and retaining great people is essential. Maintaining a high standard for products will keep customers coming back. When entrepreneurs remember why they started a business, they will find the drive to keep achieving their goals.