One of the fundamental aspects to achieving your business objectives is understanding the steps required to manage and allow them to succeed. Of these steps one of the most fundamentally important is ensuring that you have a capable funding mechanism to support it. Accessing finance like unsecured business loans can help you with each aspect of your business growth.
What Are Your Business Objectives?
Your business objectives are narrower than your business goals. Goals are much broader statements of your business's intent; like how big a market share you want in 12 months; how many retail outlets you want to open in the next three years; how many clients you need to bring on board; or reaching a defined production capacity.
Your business objectives, according to the RMIT University, are the steps your business needs to take in order to achieve those bigger goals. They are the operational, production, and sales levers that you use to achieve business success.
A common acronym for defining your business objectives is SMART;
Specific - to understand what they are focused on
Measurable - to allow for identification of success or failure
Achievable - the need to be realistic in terms of your resources and finances
Realistic - asking too much of them to make them impossible
Timeframe - timescales should be set for each objective.
Each of your objectives are are outlined in order to answer all the questions of ‘how’ you are going to achieve your business goals. They will be concise enough to set out what is going to be achieved, who will be charged with doing so and when it is going to be completed.
SMART clarifies the steps taken and include the milestones needed to encourage and motivate all the stakeholders involved.
Your business plan will help your organisation achieve its objectives, but only once those objectives have been identified so your business plan allows a strategy for:
- Setting a timeframe
- Organising the delivery of your objectives
- Setting performance targets
- Defining the role of key individuals
- Identify the role of investment
- Allow for evaluation and amendment.
Using Performance Management As Stepping Stones For Achieving Business Objectives
Managing your employee's performance isn't just a lot of paperwork and tiresome evaluation meetings, it can offer strong methodology to achieving your company objectives. Within business management there has been a growing confusion over how goals that are SMART can also be incorporated into effective employee engagement.
However when used correctly performance management can be a key tool in aligning personal as well as corporate goals and be a practical means for delivering on organisational objectives.
There are three aspects to setting performance management goals which will bring your organisational aims, and those tasked with implementing it, together:
Setting employee goals
Ensuring your employees follow their goals involves making them clear and objective as well as clearly outlining how they will contribute to the success of the business's objectives. These goals should address both the what and the how: 'What is expected?' and 'How will it be achieved?'
These should include how and when projects will be completed, tools and manpower used and their effect on increased revenue. The purpose of employee goals is to ensure that their actions are contributing to the organisation's business goals and objectives, even if that is simply improving aspects such as customer service or response times.
Providing useful and actionable feedback
Providing regular feedback and advice is essential for ensuring employee goals and targets are both met and actioned correctly. It's too easy for managers to forget to do this and leave appraisals and review meetings to lapse. Review meetings should be set at regular intervals. a nd failing to do so results in:
- Employees falling behind their targets
- Issues and problems building up
- No noticeable improvement in employee performance.
The manager's role is to make employees better at their jobs so think carefully about the following when conducting review meetings:
- Scheduled and in private
- Allow the employee to self reflect
- Identify positive results or traits of the employee
- Be specific on evaluations
- Allow employees to choose how they are going to improve.
Of course it might not just be a one person job, your business might have multiple departments, which means you should at least approach performance management with a sense of how your managers will approach their teams.
Managers are tasked with delivering your business's strategy, goals and objectives to the rest of the organisation. When you managers don't translate this effectively to staff it can have a hugely detrimental effect to the core goals and objectives of the business.
Managers can bring skills, behaviours and experience to staff and if that isn't possible, then they either need to move on or you need to look to get them trained as soon as possible.
How To Use Investment Tools
What we haven't addressed yet is how the cost of implementing organisational objectives and empowering your staff to achieve them will impact on the finance your business.
There is a funding question raised as soon as staff development and management training is brought in and it is one that must be thought through with as much importance as the business objectives they seek to achieve.
Unsecured business loans might be the key to unlocking the potential in your business and while finance is often seen as blocking business development, using the right finance partner can help your business achieve objectives using the right kind of business loan finance.
Financing efficiency through technology
When your current equipment and machinery gets older it becomes slower and less efficient, so investing in better software or operating systems is key to ensuring that business objectives are done as cost effectively as possible.
Using a business loan to fund new operating or IT equipment will allow your workforce to realise their goals, improve processes and make them more productive. This could be through better use of technology or through the installation of CRM software.
Using unsecured business loans to improve company machinery and vehicles
While the usual practice would be to use some kind of asset backed finance to procure company vehicles and machinery, it is often a lot easier to purchase new vehicles, equipment and machinery using an unsecured business loan which can often be provided on equal or better terms by a growing number of financial providers.
You can also use the flexibility of unsecured business loans to help boost staff morale through incentives and rewarding the achievement of specific staff objectives, which in turn will help boost employee engagement and maintain staff retention.
Managing cash flow
Cash flow, as we have said before, is the lifeblood of any organisation. Using unsecured business loans to purchase new equipment helps you increase performance whilst ensuring your cash flow does not get hit by a big dent in outlay. No matter what your purchase, you will benefit from small monthly repayments which will help you stay within budget.
Incorporating KPIs To Monitor Business Objectives
If you have put into place an effective business plan, outlined your organisational goals, set employee targets and ensured your business funding can support it, then how are you going to monitor whether your objectives are on target?
Key performance indicators are really mini-goals you use to manage and monitor your objectives. An example KPI would be to bring on three big clients, six medium clients and twelve small clients in the next quarter.
KPIs are the measurements that reflect the defining success factors of a business:
- Key Drivers that impact on the performance of the business
- Figures that provide an “at a glance” view of the business
- Maintaining a finger on the pulse of the business
- Identify areas and concerns that need attention
- Being able to (re)act fast to drive the business forward.
Your KPIs can be tracked in order to monitor and evaluate the status of your objectives and goals, effectively measuring the success of your business objectives and judging their progress so far. Depending on what your business is, your KPIs will differ from the next business.
Achieving and Re-Evaluating Business Objectives
After you have achieved your business objectives and gotten one step closer to your business goals, it is probably time to update them and/or make new ones. Your business is a growing organism and the best type of success - for all stakeholders - is further success built on top. Constantly challenging and improving your objectives are the essential rungs on climbing the ladder to business success.
Business goals and objectives should be closely aligned to your business plan. When you update your objectives, you should ensure that this is reflected in your business plan too and that it remains your go-to business document either every day, every week, every month, or constantly.
In order to make your objectives and business plan practical and achievable, you should also be setting employee targets and embarking upon management performance techniques designed to improve every department and ensure all employees are working diligently towards their individual goals.
Throughout this time it is essential to ensure that your funding avenues are kept clearly open in order to take advantage of new technology or equipment that will make it more efficient and or easily for your organisation to achieve your desired business objectives.