All organizations, regardless of size, maturity or industry have goals. Typically, overarching goals are set by the leadership team, often the CEO themselves, and then the supporting strategies are developed around the goals with a plan on how to execute. What’s commonly missing though is a means of updating the organization on the progress towards those goals. This can be accomplished through a year-to-date progress report.
In the name of keeping things simple, it’s best to keep your goals to as few as possible and certainly not more than three -- that is if you want anyone to remember them!
1. Set goals on a department-by-department basis.
A typical business has a marketing function, a sales team and a group responsible for delivering the service, sometimes referred to as the operations unit. Let’s boil this down to three tasks for any business: market, sell and service.
Marketing, while wide-reaching, is responsible for developing a brand and maintaining a pristine image in the eyes of the public, but ultimately, their purpose is to acquire new prospective customers, commonly known as leads. As anyone in marketing will tell you, the challenge is to acquire many good-quality leads, striking a balance between quantity and quality. When picking your marketing metric, project out how many leads you’re trying to acquire in a full year. Let’s go with 500 new leads per month. That’s 6,000 in the year.
Moving on to the sales role, use historical sales figures as a baseline, and then multiply by your desired growth rate. For instance, if you are trying to grow sales by 50 percent next year, then multiply last year’s $20 million sales by 1.5 to get $30 million. This becomes your annual sales goal.
With all those sales coming in, you had better have a rock-solid system and a team of knowledgeable people delivering world-class service. The service team similarly should have a single key performance indicator as a measure of their success. In our company, we use a customer satisfaction score that is provided by the customer after they have received our service in full. We’re aiming for a 90 percent customer satisfaction score average throughout the entire year.
2. Maintain a reporting system.
To manage leads and customers, you’ll want to deploy a customer relationship management (CRM) system. There are plenty on the market ranging from relatively low-cost, entry-level packages to best-in-class enterprise grade platforms. Regardless of what system you’re using, reporting is surely a core function so make use of the reports to build a dashboard that shows you at a glance month-by-month results for marketing, sales and service.
3. Communicate to everyone at once.
Consider holding a monthly town hall or as we call it, the monthly rally. These company-wide meetings create the venue for each department to provide updates on what they worked on last month and what is being worked on this month.