Goals can give us focus and direction, but without a plan, the road often leads to nowhere!
How can you grow your business, tackle new challenges and adopt different habits? Whether it’s scaling customer base, focusing on personal development or setting aside practices that undermine success, we all have big ideas. 15 successful women entrepreneurs share their take on the awesome ways they are planning to make their professional goals work, to succeed in the new year.
Work ON your business, instead of working IN it.
As the owner of a niche online travel agency, I spent a lot of time running my business in the past, often doing work that wasn’t the best use of my time, and as a result I wasn’t able to accomplish some of my marketing goals. In 2019, I’m working on removing myself from day to day operations so that I can focus on marketing. I just completed an online course to help me learn how and what I can outsource, and how to find great help. I have hired a manager to help manage employees and travel vendors, and plan to hire a virtual assistant to help with low-level administrative tasks. I’m also signed up to take several online courses to help me achieve the new marketing goals I’ve set for myself in the coming year.
Heather Thomas, CMO, Destin Vacation Boat Rentals
Think Growth Strategically
My freelance writing business grows in proportion to the professional risks I take. Pursuing new clients, expanding my network, pitching to publications that are a stretch – all of these are key. Because I’m the sole driver of my operation, it’s hard to think of the big picture and to be strategic about growth. I find myself regarding this aspect of my business as almost an add-on.
Instead, I would like to be more systematic and calculating about risk-taking as it relates to business growth.
I want to reserve time for charting the moves I make and analyzing the results they yield.
I plan to brainstorm growth with the same care and diligence that I reserve for content development. Risk-taking is the engine that grows my business, so I plan to do it more strategically and mindfully in 2019, tracking my results as I grow.
Eileen Meyer, Blogger & freelance writer
Take stock, then expand and diversify
My biggest goal for the new year is to transition my time from my wedding planning business to my wedding coaching business. For the past nine years I’ve been a wedding planner and loved it. Though I love being a wedding planner, it is extremely stressful and physically demanding. Now I am wondering what’s next for me?
I’ve spent the last year working with an online business coach. I’ve also signed up for a class that teaches how to build up your email list and reach clients online. I also block off time each day to specifically work on the coaching business so that it doesn’t fall behind.
Lindsey Nickel, Wedding Business Coach, Lovely Day Strategy
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Kick in the revenue multiplier
One of my big picture goals for 2019 is to lead my company to break $1 million dollars in revenue this year, which is huge for my small online business!
I want to continue developing my team of resume writers and support staff so that we can better meet the needs of our clients.
Ongoing skill building and continuing education will be a major part of our plan for success this year. I’ll be attending new association conferences I have previously not attended, collaborating with colleagues, and continuing to learn new strategies and techniques from experts in my industry.
Jessica Hernandez, President of Great Resumes Fast
Create, and also monetize
In 2019 I plan to focus on revenue producing activities. As a company of creatives, it’s easy for us to put more focus on design and creation. Creating more revenue will give us a strong foundation, working capital, and the ability to improve the customer experience.
I plan to implement time blocking techniques and goal setting. I definitely have entrepreneurs ADD, so I think this will help me keep on track and hold myself accountable. I’ll allot a certain number of hours a day for sales calls and emails and set a target of a minimum amount being done each day.
Sydney James, Founder, Stay Polished
Grow your brand with new professional frontiers
This year I want to be interviewed on television about stepping up in the face of fear. For the past year I have been taking my public speaking consulting business to the next level by reaching out more boldly to prospects as well as to the media. Now I plan to up my ambitions by reaching out to television producers about stepping up to the challenge in the face of fear.
My action plan is to take daily actions in outreach, to leverage the medial attention I already have. I also want to ask for mentorship from the pros – no sense in reinventing the wheel.
Maryna Shkvorets, Engaging Talks Strategist at MarynaShkvorets.com
Proactively embrace skills and learning
As a photographer, I want to not only create a product but an experience that will boost my referrals from vendors and clients. Plus, I want the branding to go with my photography to help me reach the next level of my business.
I have invested in a year long branding and business course, which ends with a conference from a successful photographer. I think learning from someone who now is able to charge a premium for wedding photography, (because she created this brand) will help me to understand and achieve that level of business.
Hilary Hull, Owner at Hilary Hull Photography
Face your fears – show and prove
I am excited about this upcoming year because I will now have the time and energy I always hoped for to dedicate to my book. In late October I quit my state job and decided the stress it was causing me wasn’t worth the hassle. I had always told myself that if I was able to give my book all of my attention It would be more successful. So now I put myself in a situation where I feel I have to show and prove. To help me achieve this goal in 2019 I have been registering for different vendor events in the nyc area that promise to offer exposure. I’ve been networking more, and pitching publications too. I have also been reaching out to organizations who I think my book is a great fit for. But the biggest hurdle in all this is me going to put a table out on the street and greet the public. I am sooo nervous about doing this. Through research I found out that you don’t need a license to sell books on a sidewalk but I’m nervous about that. So come spring I’ll battle my fear because that’s what I have to do to reach the masses -put myself out there.
Felicia Harris, Author, The Makings of Me book
Also read: How can you make fear work for your success?
Strategically Move from Ideas to Action
I am going to write my book, the one that’s been thought through, worried about, mentally planned and never come to life.
I am choosing this coming year to set aside the fear of committing to a dream and falling short.
After all, not even starting is worse! So this coming year I’m stepping out and stepping up.
The first thing I’m doing is boldly declaring that I’m doing it. This is the first step in overcoming my fear, especially since my fear is related to not sharing my dream in case I fall short of achieving it. Second, I’m setting a measurable goal that I will share with an author friend. I will do one chapter each week roughly written and then a second and third time through for edits as needed. Next, I will evaluate at four months if I’m on course with my goal. I have been stuck with feeling guilty over investing in a book writing coach, knowing it would be a financial strain. So, I have good motivation to accomplish this goal to save money. Or evaluate if more methods (such as a writing coach or boot camp) are needed.
Jami Kirkbride, Speaker, Author, and Licensed Professional Counselor, Parenting With Personality
New outlook – teamwork makes the dream work
I am a work-at-home mom running a home & garden blog. I want to grow my business but it’s already a full time job. I’ve realized that I have become the bottleneck in my own company, and my plan is to eliminate this bottleneck by outsourcing or hiring for two positions: an editor and a writer.
Getting rid of this work load should give me enough time to work on strategic planning and growing the business. I’ll start looking for candidates next week and hope to hire for the first position early 2019. I have to admit that it scares me to give away my current position to someone else, but I also realize that for my business to be able to grow, I must change.
Cynthia Brown, Founder and Chief Editor at Only Top Reviews
Go granular to grow!
2019 will be my first full year in business and I’m setting big goals for a big year!
I want to earn $5-10k/month in revenue, standardize my tax, client management, website engagement, and marketing systems. I’m also aiming to build brand awareness by getting published in at least 5 key publications and boost client relations.
To achieve all of this, I plan to reach out to mentors & role models, build an editorial calendar and break out goals in monthly increments.
On the personal front, I want to work out five days a week to manage energy and maintain sanity and work when the kids are at school instead of playing on social media.
Pushing myself outside of my comfort zone regularly and tackling one thing at a time to focus on deep work is also on my agenda.
Kristi Andrus, CEO & Head Coach, LUXI
Win with productivity
One way I am setting myself up for my highest productivity ever and success in 2019 is by setting and keeping more concrete schedules. This means the night before I will be mapping out my entire day, with my 1-3 important or big tasks that I want to conquer that day, all laid out, along with my small tasks that help keep the flow including when I am going to get up to get food. For me, laying out the entire day along with my important tasks is very important because it helps me accomplish my big goals and tiny tasks.
This is a big deal when you are only accountable to yourself and trying to get things done. I have failed in really scheduling out and following through on my day many times in the past year, and that is why it is so important for me this coming year.
Stacy Caprio, Founder, her.ceo
Break through ceilings
I work at a small e-commerce tech company (less than 20 employees), and my number one concern is losing my motivation due to a lack of upward growth (small company = lack of upper management positions). So, to curb my growing fear of hitting the proverbial glass ceiling, I decided to get creative.
Within the last month, I started a project that I soon discovered would be too much for just one person to handle. Since my team is already small and busy with their own projects, I created an internship position for which I would be the sole recruiter and manager. I drafted a proposal, job description, and project outline for my boss’ approval. I managed to overcome my fear of never getting that management experience I so desperately want.
Taylor Chastain, Partnership Coordinator, USB Memory Direct
Build industry reach
My goal is to continue to cultivate my brand and extend my reach outside of my organization. I want to pursue speaking opportunities at conferences and on panels, reinforcing my thought leadership in the jewelry and retail industries. I also find great value in learning from others, so I’d like to shift more focus externally to get inspired by leaders across a wide range of industries. This will require increased networking, allowing me to glean best practices and brainstorm new ideas with other business leaders.
Beth Gerstein, Co-CEO of Brilliant Earth
Give to community and self
My vision is to become the go-to global brand for elegant, beautiful and game changing ‘business creative’ clothing for women.
I want to support and nourish myself more by being patient with myself and the process. I do have a tendency to push myself more and harder regardless of the success and achievements I’ve made. Hence, my priority is to continue integrating balance into my work and personal life by doing more things that I love to do like yoga flow, nature walks, horse riding etc. These short breaks help me to regain my energy and look at tasks from a different, fresher perspective.
I’m also committed to supporting other women as well. As a fashion designer, I do love creating beautiful designs for professional and business ladies. We will continue supporting and hiring into our circles, women in need, who have personal responsibility for their life and the lives of their children. Knowing why I am doing what I am doing, helps me in turn to keep focus on my vision.
Mehri Babayeva, Maraley
While ideas matter, it is the intent and execution that will ultimately carry us forward to success. Sometimes it will take broader strokes and on other occasions, the minute details will matter most.
As we enter the new year with passion and purpose, what are the different approaches that you’re adopting to grow your business and professional abilities?
Pooja Krishna is an Entrepreneur, Business Mentor and Mom. She has worked both in large corporates and managed startups over the last 20+ years.
She’s a co-founder at Maroon Oak, and is founded Win Thinks, where she writes, speaks and teaches about Digital Media, Brand Building and Future Ready Businesses. A day trader for over a decade, Pooja launched Trading Paces to educate amateur and pro stock traders. As a classroom mentor, Pooja loves teaching students across the U.S. about job skills and entrepreneurship. Read about her on Huffington Post and Forbes.
A trivia buff and yoga & hula hoop enthusiast, she’s discovering the pleasure of drawing Zentangle patterns for ‘creative mindfulness.’