Sitting on my drafts section is an article entitled 2013 goals. I opened it up and saw these notes:
Facebook less. LinkedIn more.
Less organizing events. More speaking.
Less SM. More books.
Less doing. More thinking.
Apparently, most of these “goals” were left forgotten in the form of a draft until after I checked them out a year after. It would mean very much the same thing if I wrote an article now about goal setting for the New Year 2014 so I would prefer to delve more on the subject of superstition vs improvement of goals.
A good example of superstition is the Filipino’s “lihi”.
Lihi is a popular superstition in the Philippines. It not only refers to pregnancy but also applies during first day of a new year. It suggests that whatever you are doing today, for example, will reflect the your luck for the rest of this year. So Filipinos prefer not to spend money today or make sure to take a bath (*snicker*) for example as a “palihi”.
For business owners looking to start the year right with a superstitious “lihi” it might include the following: writing the first invoices of the year or making sure that workflows are reviewed or staff are aware that the New Year means back to work!
Aside from the “lihi”, of course, there’s that goal-setting an entrepreneur might announce as a harmless Facebook status liked by a couple or more friends – This is the year where my business will move to a better office!
Sometimes, on their to-do list might be a little box that says “Get started with social media management”. So they imagine elaborate campaigns that involve a lot more SM this year (SM = social media) either in SM management or in SM marketing.
Of course sometimes those goals might never happen due to unforeseen circumstances like a loss of a major client or calamity so the entrepreneur moves on with his life and forgets about those goals or resets them the next year until it becomes a vicious cycle of unfulfilled goals.
And then there’s this famous “life pro tip” that has been passed on and on that you should be keeping goals to yourself.
Take a look at Derek Sivers’ presentation on TED for example. It is presented that “people who talk about their ambitions may be less likely to achieve them”.
Yet some would argue that the other end of the spectrum – telling other people your goals – would in fact help you with accountability as your friends could remind you of what you are trying to accomplish and keep you in check. I have personally seen a lot of friends posting about their diets (Day 1 #nopork, for example) and their Project 365.
On a personal level, it should be a choice of what works and what doesn’t for you. For me, I prefer not telling.
How does this relate to your social business then?
Not telling staff or customers or mentors or partners about your business goals might not be advisable here. Aside from communicating your plans so that they can help you, you should be able to improve your work based on their feedback.
But how about improving your existing business goals instead or launching new ones? Like for example, if you got a new website last year why not improve the landing pages this year? Or if you got started with social media last year, why not improve it by adding a social media management team this year? Simple improvements like those could go a long way!
When we launched a year-end survey for customers of Third Team Media, we gained very valuable feedback what we used to improve our workflow. This is something that you could do too for your business – talk to customers, evaluate your 3 month plan, tweak your goals based on feedback.
Instead of goal-setting, a good focus would be improvement of already established goals.
Would that help instead of superstition and a new round of goal-setting? I definitely think it does. How about you? What aspects of your social business are you trying to improve this year?