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Setting big hairy long and short term business goals

- May 17, 2006 2 MIN READ

In the heady arena of business strategy, consultants find wonderful acronyms for the work they do. Let me introduce one to you. It’s the BHAG – the Big Hairy Audacious Goal! Read on to find out more about setting long and short term business goals.

A BHAG is one that really stretches you to think differently about how you do business. It’s the goal that’s going to help you transform your business, rather than being satisfied with incremental change. It’s the business goal that’s going to inspire you to do your best work and outshine your competition.

So, the question is how to set long term or short term business goals that fit into the BHAG category?

The first step is to shake off any beliefs about what is possible in your business. If you already have mindset that limits your achievements you’ll never get serious about a BHAG.

Anything is possible, right?

Next, pose some Very Hairy Challenges – like these ones….

  • I want to triple my revenue in the next 12 months.
  • I want the best known brand in Australia
  • I want to work 1 day per week and still earn the same amount of money.

You get the idea.

Now you have to work backwards from this end point in 3 steps. Let’s take the “triple your revenue” example.

Want more articles like this? Check out the setting business goals section.

Step 1:

Brainstorm ideas for making more money. No limits remember – everything is possible. For example:

  • Charge a lot more;
  • Speak for money;
  • Create a high-end product to sell (or multiple products);
  • Work with different clients who expect you to charge a lot more;
  • Sell someone else’s related product for a commission;
  • Go totally online and remove your overheads.

Step 2:

Make a list of obstacles and ways of getting around them.

Don’t have any product ideas? Get some friends and have a brainstorming session.

Not a great speaker? Write the workshop and get someone else to give it, or strive to become a great speaker.

Worried that nobody will hire you if you charge more? Well if your work is great, that’s usually not the case, but you will need to reposition yourself and adopt a different mindset.

You see, there’s nothing that can’t be overcome if you are really committed.

Step 3:

Identify what needs to happen for you to be successful. For example…

  • Surround yourself with creative people;
  • Build your knowledge in certain areas;
  • Set monthly Little Hairy Audacious Goals that progress you towards your milestones;
  • Get the support you need.

Imagine how fantastic it would be if you get so much as half way to your BHAG. That’s still a brilliant achievement. And if you don’t set yourself a BHAG, then this time next year you might be wondering what could have been.

Get on board. Let me know what your BHAG is. Write it down and stick it somewhere prominent where you can be inspired by it every day. And then have some fun working out how to make you long or short term goals happen!

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  • Andrew Caska

    Caska IP Patent Attorneys

    'Flying Solo opened up so many doors for us - I honestly don't know where I'd be without it"