Have you ever wondered why your projects are always running late, or why your distributors are losing interest in their roles?
A simple answer could be that they lack clear goals to guide them. Many businesses fail because they fail to understand the value of goal-setting. With proper alignment, goals can give your distributors a sense of purpose.
Goal setting gives a reason for doing what your company is doing and clears the path for your distributors to find out how to achieve the same. That said, here are a few steps to help you set goals for distributors.
Step 1: Define What You Want
A major part of establishing a successful distribution is identifying and defining your end goal, as well as creating a framework to get there.
However, this might be challenging for most businesses, especially if they are trying something new. To move past this, define what you want in the long run. Are you looking to expand your market share? Do you want to push a specific product or increase your profit margin?
By defining your goal, you will have a clear view of what you want to achieve and get a real perspective on your distribution potential. That’s not all. Involving your distribution team in outlining what you want will help you understand what can and can not be achieved.
Step 2: Define SMART Goals and Indicators
A SMART goal is a type of goal that is used to help guide goal setting. SMART stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Timely. A SMART goal integrates all of these elements to help focus your distributors' efforts and boost your chances of success.
- Specific - The objective clearly outlines what will be done and who will execute it so that anybody reading it understands.
- Measurable - The objective specifies how the action will be evaluated. Measuring your goals allows you to see if you're making progress. It keeps your distributors on track and on time.
- Achievable - The goal is achievable in light of the community's reality. Setting achievable objectives helps to ensure the project's success.
- Relevant - A relevant objective matches the distributor’s purpose, culture, and structure of the community and addresses the project's vision.
- Time-bound - Each target has a set completion date.
Step 3: Reach a Consensus
Every company's day-to-day operations rely heavily on decision-making. Whether you're reshuffling the distribution budget for the department, delegating distribution activities, or implementing a new strategy, the everyday decisions you make have a direct impact on the success of your distributors. But the decision-making process is not always easy.
Involving distributors in every stage of goal setting is one way to boost your chances of success. Better decision-making is always the result of diversity. Always ask for their suggestions and recommendations before moving forward.
By bringing people from other disciplinary and cultural backgrounds into the dialogue, you can stimulate creativity and gain a new perspective on the work or problem at hand.
Setting goals for your distributors while they disagree with them is counterproductive. If you tell them to achieve 150 sales and think they could reach 110 maximum, they will think you’re unreasonable. This is why having a consensus between you and them is important.
Step 4: Define a Roadmap
A roadmap in simple terms, is a visual representation of your strategic plans. It connects your strategy (the "why"), the work you'll need to accomplish to reach your goals (the "what"), and a completion date (the "when").
A roadmap, as a high-level strategy for how you will achieve your distribution goals, helps you visualize the work that needs to be done, along with a corresponding timeframe.
Here are some elements of a roadmap:
- The business objectives: These explain why you are putting in the effort.
- The goals: Where are we going? These are clearly linked to the business objectives and include how you measure success.
- The tasks: These define how you intend to attain the goals. Tasks must be clearly related to objectives.
- Timing: Knowing when each task will be finished allows you to organize and prioritize them. This also allows your distributors to forecast when goals will be completed.
- Responsible parties: This outlines who will be involved in each task and who will be held accountable for performing the tasks effectively.
Step 5: Measure and Communicate
Your objectives can be considered successful when your distributors meet their goals and objectives. Success metrics provide an overview of your distributor's performance, allowing you to improve both overall outcomes and future performance.
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For example, by tracking the progress of your distribution goal, you can determine whether or not you are on the right track and make adjustments when things go off track.
Some examples of success metrics you can use include:
- Looking at your business financial statements
- Checking client satisfaction
- Averaging the number of new customers
- Conducting performance reviews
- Assessing your own expectations
Your distributors’ morale, productivity, engagement, and satisfaction all benefit from effective communication. You improve collaboration and cooperation by communicating the achievements and failures of the set distribution goals. It also leads to more effort and better outcomes for individuals and teams.
We all know that creating goals is vital, yet we often underestimate their significance as we go through our daily activities.
Setting goals does not have to be daunting. There are various benefits to setting objectives for your distributors. Setting goals helps encourage new behaviors, orient focus, and maintain momentum in the business.
It’s difficult to manage something you don't measure, or improve on what you don't manage and understand well. That’s not all. Finding your way to clients in an unfamiliar territory can be intimidating. For this reason, having a dependable market entry and business development expert by your side will increase your presence and sales in new markets. The right business development company will analyze the market, deploy a strategy, contract with commercial partners, and identify acquisition opportunities for you so you can focus on running your business.