Small business owners are leaders. Their employees look to them for advice, encouragement, support, and guidance. They have to provide their team with an endless supply of motivation while holding them accountable. But, what about holding the small business owner accountable? Whose job is that? This is a topic that comes up often – and one that we consistently address with small business owners.

As a small business owner and entrepreneur, you must have someone to be accountable to and that all begins with you. Here are six ways to answer to yourself and crush your goals in 2018.

1. Write your goals down.

From daily to-do lists to short and long-term goals, write everything down so your goals are more tangible. Get your thoughts and ideas out of your head and in writing. When you can see your goals with your eyes, they become more concrete. Put them in a conspicuous place where you see them every day.

You can keep a notepad of your daily to-do list on your desk. You can put your list of short and long-term goals on a cork board above your desk. You can write them on a white board in your office. Or, you can place them in a journal that you refer to daily. Be creative, just make sure you figure out what it is that you’re working toward. Don’t be afraid to set big targets for yourself – what matters is that you have your eyes on the prize. Without goals, you’re like a ship sailing without a destination and in that case, your business will go wherever the wind takes you. 

2. Break big goals down into micro-goals.

When you have a large goal, it’s going to consist of a series of micro-goals. With the long-term goal in mind, break that down into smaller, micro-goals that will help get you to your destination. For example, when starting a business, micro-goals include doing market research, finding the funding, hiring a business law attorney, hiring an accountant, deciding on the structure, selecting a name for the business, obtaining the necessary licenses and permits, creating a website, and opening a bank account. Each of these are micro-goals. It’s critical to break large goals down into micro-goals so you have a roadmap, a blueprint for success. Something to reference as you inch closer to your larger goals. 

3. Celebrate milestones.

You want to take your business seriously, but it can’t be all work and no play. When your team reaches a milestone, celebrate its success. Remember, it’s important to bring fun and business together on occasion. In fact, Shark Tank star Barbara Corcoran says that fun is the “magic juice” that’s underutilized in the business world.

Richard Branson is on the same page as Corcoran. “Fun is one of the most important – and underrated – ingredients in any successful venture,” Branson writes in The Virgin Way: Everything I Know About Leadership. “If you’re not having fun, then it’s probably time to call it quits and try something else.” So, when your team hits one of its major goals, by all means, take a break to celebrate this milestone and thank your team members for their enormous contributions. 

4. Take a much-needed vacation to recharge.

Entrepreneurs need to let go of the reigns and stop fearing vacations. Why is it important that you take a vacation? Vacations help you stay motivated. They give you something to look forward to. They give you the opportunity to get a mental break and recharge your batteries. You can’t work all the time and expect nothing to breakdown.

If you feel you need an excuse to take a vacation, you can take this approach: 1) choose a big, but attainable goal, 2) create micro-goals to help you achieve that goal, 3) work toward the goal, 4) achieve the goal, and then 5) celebrate by taking a much-needed vacation! Your employees, your loved ones, and your body will be thankful for it! 

5. Reassess performance.

As a business owner, it’s important that you reassess your performance regularly. If something’s not up to par, you have no one to blame but yourself. If the sales aren’t up, or if your staff are making mistakes, you can’t point the fingers at others, you have to take responsibility. You are solely accountable for the success of your business. The entrepreneurs who fail tend to place the blame on employees – and that’s the wrong way to go about it. If something’s not working, pinpoint the problem and make it right. 

6. Seek feedback from a business coach.

Being a business owner is hard work, and a lot of it. There is zero reason to do it alone. The most successful business owners in the world espouse the importance of mentorship and business coaching. If you want to set a high bar for yourself, work with a business coach. If your personal performance is lacking, who is going to hold you accountable? A business coach will give you the unbiased feedback you need to succeed.

At AdviCoach, your success is our business. It all begins with identifying your goals, breaking them down, and creating a practical roadmap to help you achieve them. Contact us today to start your journey and realize your true potential.