goals

Are your goals and motivations the same thing?

Are your goals and motivation the same thing_.png

Recently, on a plane ride to Las Vegas I was seated next to a fellow entrepreneur who runs a marketing company. Naturally, we started talking about our businesses. When he found out I was a business coach, he asked how much I deal with business stuff versus how much I deal with feelings and emotions.

I told him that I dealt quite a bit with the feelings and mindsets of business owners - far more than I ever expected to when I started as a coach to be honest. As we continued talking about mindset, I could sense that he had lost his real motivation for running his business and he didn't really know why. Which brought up some key questions I often ask business owners – What is it that you want to achieve? What are your goals? What motivates you?

Sometimes your goals and what motivates you are not the same thing.

In his case, he wanted to make millions of dollars in his business - that was the big goal. He thought he knew why - to be successful, to have created something really incredible, to go bigger and better and make the work he was doing feel really exciting... but he didn't sound really excited about it and he couldn't verbalize why that was really meaningful to him. From where he was standing he couldn't understand his lack of motivation... from where I was standing, what he was dangling in front of himself as a carrot didn't seem like the thing he actually wanted to get him moving on a day to day basis.

WHAT DO YOU ACTUALLY WANT?

He felt like making millions of dollars would mean he had really succeeded.

Okay, but why? Was he feeling motivated on a regular basis? Making millions of dollars was a big goal that was going to take awhile... what was going to feel like a win between now and then?  

He didn't really know.

Was he happy? Not really.  His business was his life but he wasn't really feeling excited about it at the moment. The joy and excitement of entrepreneurship had kind of fizzled out.

So what WOULD make him excited... while he was working on making his millions?

The more we chatted the more we found that thing that actually excited him.... travel. He knew he could work from anywhere and he was in a situation where he wasn't really tied down to any one city at the moment. So... why wasn't he travelling?

He didn't know.

The only thing holding him back was making the decision to actually do it. (mindset!)

For him, seeing this motivation as a reason to reach his goals started making more sense than just working to make millions of dollars. His million-dollar goal wasn't tangible enough to get him jazzed every single day  – travelling is attainable and is something he can do now right now.

So, if you are in business and you tell people your goal is to make more money, but find that you’re not motivated (there is no wind in your sails) is it time for a reframe? What motivates you? What changes need to be made in order for you to reach your goals? How can you get excited about your business and what you do again?

Asking yourself what you really want is a conversation you need to constantly have with yourself. Checking in and asking yourself this on a regular basis will keep you on track and help you achieve your real goals.

Having business goals may seem like the way to stay motivated, but it isn't always (and that's not only OK, it's normal!!) 

And if you want help figuring it out, book a call with me - I'd love to talk about whether I'm the right person to help you figure that out, as well as how to keep moving forward towards reaching all your business goals!

Are you ready for a great 2016?

Planning has never been one of my fortes. I'm more of a fly by the seat of my pants, figure it out as I go... "instructions?! No way!" kind of person.

I've owned quite a few businesses over the last 8 + years and over each year it has become increasingly clear that regardless of whether or not I like to plan for a new year, doing it makes my business better, stronger, and (this is the best part) it makes more money!!

I thought I would share a few of my favourite strategies and tools for getting ready for a new year.

1) Three words

Every year I like to choose three words to theme my year on (thanks to a trend started by Chris Brogan quite a few years ago!). These words help guide me in figuring out what I want to do, how I want to be of service and who I want to be in my business.

In previous years I've chosen:  Create, Teach, Help and Focus, Organize, Produce

I like to spend a bit of time every year thinking about what words I want to have guide me and I encourage you to do the same. This year my words are Grow, Inspire, Support - and I look forward to showing you how those are going to be actualized in my business!  Leave your three words in the comments below!

2) Planners and workbooks

There are a lot of great planners out there. Every year I buy Leonie Dawson's Life and Business workbooks because they help me think through all the important pieces of the previous year and the year that's to come. That gets me to the place where I can start to put my new year out on paper as well and into my planner. My favourite planner is the Planner Pad because I love the funnel down system of managing tasks but there are many wonderful planners out there (including one from Leonie Dawson).

I encourage you to pick something and start getting it ready for the new year. It's taken me many years to find systems that work for me, but trying out different ones and experimenting with them was key. If you use a different planner you love, leave a comment and let me know what it is!!

3) My new 2016 Free Planning Challenge

I've been putting together so many resources for my clients on getting ready for 2016 that I decided to put together a free challenge for everyone. Sign up by clicking here and starting December 1 you'll get an email a day for 7 days setting you up for the best year ever. I would really love to have you take part so I look forward to seeing you in the Challenge update posts in the Biz Studio!

What are you trying to achieve by using social media?

I've been conducting a lot of one on one sessions lately and before we can come up with a strategy for any specific social media efforts it's really important to be clear on three things:

  • What are you trying to achieve?
  • Who are you talking to?
  • What do you want them to know?

Over the next little while I'm going to write a post for each of those questions to hep you figure out how to answer them. Once you have those three things clear it will be a lot easier for you to figure out what you should be saying online.

What are your goals?

Spend some time thinking about your business goals in general but more specifically about what you're hoping to achieve by being online. It's probably (though not necessarily) a given that one of your goals is to make more money. But your goals may also include things like:

  • Being known as an expert at something
  • Being seen as a resource on a certain topic
  • Expanding your audience geographically or demographically
  • Getting more engagement online and building community
  • Increasing sales in a certain part of your business
  • Getting other people to talk about you to their communities

Because it always helps to see specific examples I'll share some of mine and create some fictional examples:

  • Be seen as an expert in explaining social media for small business
  • Be seen as an expert in nutrition and wellness
  • Expand audience beyond the Ottawa-area
  • Expand audience to new moms 
  • Increase sales in one-on-one coaching and speaking
  • Create content that is linked to by other bloggers and media outlets
  • Be more findable in search

You can be even more precise and create goals that are channel-specific:

  • Increase Facebook likes by 300 people
  • Establish a presence on YouTube and get 1000 video views
  • Get retweeted and tagged by industry experts on Twitter


Really understand what you're trying to achieve

The more you work to figure out these goals and why you're setting them, the more likely you are to be able to work them into your plan efficiently. Take a few minutes and write down an explanation of what you mean by each one and why they're important to you.

For example:

I really enjoy helping small business owners figure out how to use social media for their business. I get charged and excited when having one-on-one coaching calls with business owners and hearing them figure out what they could be doing. Their lightbulb moments make my day. I want to do more of that so I need to make it clear that this is something that I do, like to do and am good at.

You may feel that it's time to expand beyond your local market. You like to spend time in Toronto and Boston and want to start by growing your audience in those specific cities next. To do that, you need to start to grow an audience in those cities so there is already a start of a customer base in those cities when you arrive to hold an event or launch a product.

Time to do the work

I challenge you to spend 10 minutes right now coming up with 3 or 4 goals for your use of social media over the next 6 months. Really think about what you like to do, what you want to be doing and why you want to be doing it. Then leave a comment and share some with us here!

Beyond planning: The importance of strategic planning

plan-to-succeed

The longer we run our business, the more emphasis and priority Lara and I put on planning. And I don't mean just laying out a plan for what we want to do. Every year, we take a more strategic approach to setting goals, developing products, and creating content. It's making us better at what we do, better at helping our clients, and understanding our clients' needs. 

We have started having 3-4 planning days per year to set priorities, plan timelines, discuss ideas, etc. It's time we spend away from doing any work for clients or product development. However, it's absolutely critical to the short- and long-term progress and success of our business.

So much of what we do as business owners applies to planning and using social media in a strategic way. Imagine, if you will, a person who has what they feel is a fabulous idea for a business. Remember the jump to conclusions mat from Office Space? (Warning: there's a little four-letter language in this clip.)

Starting a business without clear goals, research into marketability of products and services, or realistic view of what's involved can lead to a rude awakening. I think every business owner has experienced this to some degree - whether a product or service completely bombs or they have to rethink their entire business model. That's usually when you come to the fork in the road and you have to decide which new direction to take.

Strategy is just as important to social media success

We make every effort to simplify social media for our clients. It's not rocket science. We know this. However, between using the actual tools and crafting messages with a strategic focus and tying it all in to your business objectives, the process can get overwhelming. Small business don't need a 100-page strategy document, but they do need to start with identifying goals, audiences, and key messages. Once they know the what and the why, then they can move on to tactics (the how). The "how" is pretty easy once you've established "what" and "why".

Answer these questions for your business

  • Why do we use <insert social network>?
  • Is our presence effective?
  • Are we using it to our advantage?
  • Have we gained any customers through that channel?

They aren't easy questions, but it's worth reflecting. This is the time of year that we all start looking at a fresh start in the New Year. We all want to be more organized, focused, productive. 

You can do all of those things, but it starts with a plan. I'm personally terrible at setting goals for our business in the areas that I am responsible for - Lara is pushing me and reminding me to be better (or just do it). I know the importance. I know why I struggle with it. I'm working on a solution that works for me and our business because without setting those goals, even knowing my audience and key messages, I'm holding myself and my business back from being the best we can be.


Webinar - Get Results in 2015 using Social Media with a Plan!

Lara and I are going to talk about planning tips, advice, and resources during our December 9th webinar. Sign up here!


Do you struggle with staying focused in your day-to-day use of social channels? That can derail your plans for social media AND other areas of your business. Our Daily Social Media Checklist can help.

Just enter your email address and we'll send you this free tool to help you focus your efforts. You'll also receive weekly emails from Lara and I with valuable tips and information about how to grow your business using social media. 

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Small business resources: 2014 planning

We’re already a couple of weeks into January but we’re still working hard on our overall planning for 2014.  Today we’re sharing some resources that we’ve found helpful in planning our year. Leave us a comment and share some of the tools, tips, or tricks that have helped you get on track for a great 2014!

Leonie Dawson

(Affiliate Link)I discovered Leonie Dawson about a year ago. She’s a self proclaimed hippie and I will admit that at first I didn’t really think her content would be for me, but I was wrong.  Last year we bought her business planning document and liked it so much that this year we went on to buy both her business planner and her life planner (affiliate link).

I really like that she helps you close off the previous year and figure out what you learned, what you achieved and sometimes what you need to let go of.  Then she helps you figure out what your goals are for the coming year and how to break them down into achievable pieces.

(Affiliate Link)

Planner Pads

I’m not very organized; I readily admit it. We were told about Planner Pads by Amanda from Little Lotus Yoga and right away I saw how my brain and this planner could work together. :)

The concept is of a funnel.  You list everything you have to do at the top and then funnel it down to the right date and time. If you don’t do it when you funneled it down, it’s still on the list at the top to funnel down elsewhere.

Since I’m also a big fan of writing things out by hand, this planner has worked really well for me - and everyone else we’ve recommended it to has loved it as well. 

Wellman Wilson Consulting

We have a few planning documents we think can help you get 2014 off to a great start as well.

We have a planning document to help you figure out what direction to take your content in this year with purpose, goals and metrics.  We also have an editorial calendar for you to schedule content into ahead of time taking the guess work out of “what do I write today?!”

Are you ready to have an amazing 2014? We are!