Setting Work And Life Goals As A Tradesperson

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As a trades business, life is always on the move. There is never a moment to stand still, from quoting for jobs on the way to other jobs, invoicing late into the evening, managing many moving parts of suppliers, teams, contractors, and juggling changing client requirements. 

You may feel like every day in your business is like Groundhog Day. Your business is constantly moving, but perhaps it feels like you’re going around in circles instead of growing and scaling. 

Often, for tradespeople, the most common question clients ask about your success is if your business is busy. But, being busy may not always feel like a success when you’re working every weekend and missing out on time with the family or adventures with your mates.

This is why goals can be so valuable for your business and life. They keep you motivated, focused and give your business the sense of direction that can get you to where you want to be. 

So, what does success as a tradesperson really look like to you? 

Is it:

  • Working four days a week and enjoying a long weekend?
  • Finishing at 3 pm to pick the kids up from school each day
  • Reaching a targeted turnover? 
  • Having profit margins at a certain percentage?
  • Being mortgage-free?
  • Becoming a season ticket holder and being able to go to all home and away matches?
  • Playing golf every Sunday morning?

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Whatever success looks like to you, the best way to get there is by setting goals and then planning your roadmap to get there. 

Why Set Goals?

Setting goals help you to create a long-term vision to keep you on track to get you to where you want to be. It also creates the stepping stones and motivation for the short term so that you can make the most of each day. 

Without goals, your focus can blur. It’s like being out in the wilderness; the best way to go forward is to get to a high point and map out your route ahead. Setting goals is just like that. 

Do I Need Personal Goals Too?

Business goals are often the ones that are easiest to set. Most people go into a trade business with a vision of its success. It is these goals that help to motivate you to go to work each day. However, putting all your efforts into your business goals can come at the expense of your personal life. 

Setting personal goals can help to make sure you’re creating balance and building a life you love beyond your professional success. It’s a great way to reward yourself for working hard in your business too.

What Goals Should I Set?

Everyone will have a different version of success. As a result, every goal will be different depending on what is important to you. It’s easy to choose arbitrary financial goals; reaching six or seven figures can be a common goal. While choosing these goals is okay, it is important to relate them back to why you want to reach that goal. What would it mean to you? What would you want to do with the money? 

So, what feels important to you? Freedom, time, customer satisfaction, business growth, expansion, money, hobbies, holidays, health, family or something else? Whatever feels important to you and what really lights you up is where you can start setting your goals.

How To Set Goals

Now you know what to aim for, the next step is to plan your goals. A goal of reaching £250,000 is too vague. Does that relate to your revenue, profit or take-home income? And when do you want to reach this figure, in months, a year, five years? 

An effective way to structure business and personal goals is to use the SMART framework. This stands for:

  • Specific: Is the goal clear and easy to understand? 
  • Measurable: How will you know you’re making progress or have reached your goal?
  • Achievable: Is the goal attainable – can you create a plan based on your goal?
  • Realistic: Is the goal relevant to your life and within reach?
  • Timebound: Has it got a clearly defined timeline or target date? 

For example, I will save £10,000 (specific) by setting aside between £750-£1000 per month (measurable) by budgeting and using a Profit First approach (achievable) so that I can buy a sports season ticket (realistic) by 1st May 2023 (timebound).

10 Top Tips For Setting Goals as a Tradesperson

The Profit First method is a way of ensuring you’re prioritising your profit in your business. So often, businesses look at profit as revenue – expenses = profit. The Profit First method switches this to revenue – profit = expenses. By doin

Whatever goals are right for you, there are a few top tips that can help you stay on track:

  1. Create milestones and smaller rewards to keep you on track for bigger goals
  2. Develop an action plan with steps towards your goals
  3. Regularly review and reflect on your progress to see how far you’ve come
  4. Tell others to encourage accountability and support
  5. Anticipate obstacles and consider workarounds
  6. Don’t be afraid to say no to things that take you away from your goals
  7. Write your goals down (research shows you’re 42% more likely to reach your goals when they’re written down)
  8. Check-in regularly to make sure your goals still excite you
  9. Spring clean any clutter from your mind and space (any future goals can be logged somewhere safe)
  10. Aim for a maximum of three goals at any one time. 

At Workever, our goal is to empower more trade businesses like yours to streamline and organise their workload. We’d love to know what your goals are! 

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