Why You Need to Set Goals for Your Franchise in the New Year (and How to Do it)

SMART Goals banner image

{Updated January 2024}

With a New Year comes countless New Year’s resolutions where people set goals for themselves to pursue over the next twelve months. While done with good intentions, it’s all too easy to set goals each year and then lose focus on them a couple of months later.

The same thing goes for franchisees running their business. Setting goals is just one part of running a successful business, but actually executing on them is a completely different thing. It’s important for franchisees to set achievable goals that they can execute on. 

Your franchisor will likely assist you with setting annual goals to reach, but you can also have your own personal business goals, which will help you maintain and grow your franchise location. Let’s evaluate the importance of goal setting for a business and how you can actually reach the milestones you set at the beginning of each year.

Why Should You Set Annual Goals for Your Business?

To use an archery analogy, setting goals is like having a target. You could shoot arrows off into the distance just for fun, but you won’t be able to tell if your archery skills are improving or not. However, if you set up a target to shoot at, you can then measure how well you’re doing and make adjustments to get better.

Similarly, when you don’t have goals for your business, it’ll be difficult to measure any marketing or promotional campaigns because you’re just shooting arrows at nothing. With goals, you’ve set your target, and you’ll know if you need to make adjustments. 

You should also use numbers when setting goals since those are measurable. For example, if your goal is to increase your website visitors by 10 percent over the next six months, then you’ll be able to concretely tell if your marketing and promotions are helping you reach that goal or if you need to change your strategy.

How to Set Achievable Goals

It’s important to think strategically about your goals so you don’t end up with a scattered list of unrealistic ideas. It’s helpful to set your goals using the following categories: 

  • Short-term These goals are for the next several months or year. They should be fairly reachable so you can gain momentum and motivation as you reach them. An example of a short-term goal would be to increase website traffic by 10% over the next six months.
  • Long-Term – These goals look years into the future. Ask yourself where you want your franchise business to be in five to ten years. These goals speak more to expansion and growth, which is more than just increasing website visitors or revenue. They should be reachable, but they should also require a lot of effort to reach. An example of a long-term goal is opening another franchise location in five years.
  • Almost Unreachable – These are your pie-in-the-sky goals that might seem a little ridiculous when you say them out loud, but you should say them anyway. They should be a little unrealistic but reachable in a best-case-scenario kind of way. An example of an almost unreachable goal might be opening five new locations within the next decade or bringing in $5 or $10 million in revenue in one year. What is “almost unreachable” will depend on each business situation.

5 Tips to Successfully Execute Your Business Goals

#1 – A Clear Vision

It’s important to know your vision as a business owner as this will guide every short-term, long-term, and stretch goal you make. Here are some examples of businesses that operate under a clear vision.

XYZ Corporation (Technology): “to be a global leader in providing innovative solutions and cutting-edge technology.”

ABC Consulting (Professional Services): “to be the trusted partner, delivering exceptional services and creating lasting value for our clients.” 

Quality Foods Inc. (Food Industry): “to be the preferred choice for high-quality nutritious food products that enrich the lives of our consumers.”  

#2 – Specific Objectives

Don’t be vague when you set goals for your franchise business. An ill-defined goal is difficult to achieve. Rather, set SMART goals for your business:

S – Specific
M – Measurable
A – Achievable
R – Relevant
T – Time-bound

For example, instead of simply wanting to “increase sales”, a SMART goal would identify the exact revenue increase percentage you would like to see by the end of the year.

#3 – Detailed Planning

There’s truth to the saying “those who don’t plan – plan to fail”. Once you’ve set your goal, it’s important to outline exactly the steps you plan to take and the resources you’ll need to obtain in order to reach your business objectives.

It’s helpful to break your goals into milestones and to have tangible ways to measure your success. 

#4 – Prioritize Goals

Realistically, a business will have several goals, not just one. Time and resources are often a zero-sum game. This means you’ll need to prioritize your business goals based on their impact and feasibility while working on the most important ones first. 

#5 – Adaptability

Flexibility is key to the success of any business. We don’t live in a world where you can rigidly stick to your plan without expecting anything around you to change. You should be willing to adapt your strategies as your circumstances or market conditions change. This means that you’ll need to diligently monitor your business in relation to its goals. You should keep close tabs on progress, potential obstacles, and then make needed adjustments to stay on track.

Interested in Owning a Franchise?

The important thing to remember about goals is that while you want to reach them, you can still gain a lot even when you don’t. When you fall short of a goal, you can make adjustments. If you reach a goal too easily, then you can set more difficult ones in the future. 

If your goal right now is to become a franchise business owner, then FranNet can help you reach it. Our expert franchise consultants will evaluate your goals and abilities to match you with the right franchise opportunity. They will walk you through the process from start to finish answering any questions you have. Schedule your free consultation today to get started!


Dec 4, 2018