If you’ve been following this blog series so far (and if you haven’t you can catch up here and here) you’ll know that I’ve made two spring resolutions this year. New Year’s resolutions are so 2016. During the course of my life I’ve made dozens of different resolutions. Some have succeeded and some haven’t. I’ve realised that there are two main differences between the two. Firstly, how much I wanted to achieve the goal or not and secondly, what steps I took to track my progress.
Choosing the right goal
I was 23 when I went to university. When I left school I had an offer of a place but it was my second choice and I didn’t know what I’d get out of it besides a mountain of debt. Of course, a mountain of debt then is a molehill now, but that’s another debate. I spent a few years doing various courses and a few secretarial and admin jobs whilst I worked out what to do next. When I finally went to university I’d escaped from a job I hated. I was motivated to study and find a proper career path. By the end of my first year I’d had a fantastic time and put on a massive amount of weight. I wanted to feel healthy again so I did something about it. Getting into the right frame of mind just felt easy.
Choosing a 10k run as a health goal took a while. I can’t set goals based on what other people think of me. It has to be about my own opinion of myself. I know that probably makes me deeply narcissistic but it’s true. I’m the only person who can put one foot in front of the other first thing in the morning or keep my hand out of the biscuit tin.
Why do I need to track my data?
When you first set a goal that you’re really excited about, you just launch yourself into it. You’ve made the plan and you’re fired up to execute it. Then, a few weeks in, your motivation can start to slip. The changes you made take you out of your comfort zone and it starts to feel like more of an effort. That’s where tracking comes in.
The benefits of tracking health goals should be fairly obvious. You can see the number of pounds lost or how much faster you’re running. They’re even more important in your business.
What you choose to track is completely up to you. Revenue is a fairly obvious one but there are other methods you can use to track your progress. Say you have a month (or more) where you haven’t increased your sales or won a new client. It would be very easy to get despondent but you might have gained ground in other ways. Maybe your social media following has increased or you’ve got new sign ups to your e-mail marketing. You could have had new enquiries that haven’t resulted in paid work but they could do in the future.
The beauty of the process is that you can choose to track whatever you want. Focus on your goal and work out what needs to happen for you to achieve it. That way you can track the small steps that eventually turn into a bigger business success.
What do you track in your business? Let me know in the comments?
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I track my metrics on individual platforms but also via my dashboard on www.cyfe.com