A goal without a plan is just a wish.

Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Have you set goals for growth in 2024?

Have you determined what specific steps you’re going to take to reach your new goals?

Spending a little extra time in the goal-setting phase will greatly enhance your chances for success.

There are a lot articles that discuss S.M.A.R.T. goals, but most emphasize how to set them without mentioning the importance of putting a solid plan of action in place to achieve success.

S.M.A.R.T. Goals

Set your goals using the S.M.A.R.T. formula to make it easier to define the actions needed for success.

  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Attainable
  • Relevant
  • Timely


The more specific your goal, the easier it is to realize how to achieve it. Consider these six “W” questions:

  • What do I want to accomplish?
  • Which resources will be required?
  • Which obstacles must be overcome?
  • Who will be involved?
  • Why is achieving this goal important?
  • Where will this happen?

The answers will show you what needs to be done.


Without making your goal measurable, it will be difficult to know if you’ve achieved it. A measurable goal would be increasing customer count by 25%.


It’s good to set goals that will cause you to stretch a bit. However, if your goals are unachievable, you’ve failed before you even begin.


Does this goal align with the broader objectives of your organization?


What is the time frame for accomplishing this goal?

If this is an annual, or longer-term goal, what are the intermediate milestones you need to hit to remain on target for achieving it?

The next step

Going through this exercise for each of your goals gives you the information you need to determine if you have access to the resources and time to reach them.

What exactly needs to be done?

When do you  need to begin?

Will you need additional budget?

Will you need outside expertise?

Answering these questions will enable you to turn a wish into a plan of action to propel you to success.

So, what is your process for setting goals and enacting plans to accomplish them?

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