A team of business executives mapping out their first-year goals for their new business.

Business Goals for the First Year

July 19, 2022

Bob Lobos

First Year Goals for Your New Business – What Should You Focus On?

The first year of running a business can be challenging as you’re just starting to find your footing as a business owner. You need to remain focused on what you want to accomplish to gain traction in the early stages of your business. Setting first-year goals for your new business can help you stay focused and set you up for long-term success.

Running a new business can seem overwhelming as you might not know what to focus on and how to prioritize your objectives. Setting first-year goals for your new business can break up your strategy into digestible pieces, making your plan easier to achieve.

If you are thinking about starting a business or you’re in your first year, you can benefit from the entrepreneurship program at Wolf Creek Business Growth Institute. We offer a 10-week course that helps you get to the bottom of your reason for starting a business, develop your existing business plan, and execute your goals for success. You can take our program in-person or virtually and in groups or individually. Contact us today to sign up for our entrepreneurship program.

First-Year Goal for a New Business #1: Create a Sustainable Business Model

Creating a sustainable business model is an essential first-year goal for any new business. Building that model will ensure quick profitability while also ensuring the company will stay afloat far into the future. You do not want to build a business model around a trend because trends don’t last forever.

To enact this first-year goal for your new business, you need to ask yourself some tough questions, like:

  • What value do you give to your customers?
  • What problems do you solve for them?
  • What is your unique selling proposition?

Along with making sure your business is commercially profitable, your business has to be involved in the local area or give back to your industry. When you give back, you see major returns for you. You could provide cash donations, offer your services or products to the community or other businesses, host a social charity event, and more. Giving back has its benefits, such as:

  • Increased exposure.
  • Increased networking opportunities.
  • Building stronger business relationships.
  • Attracting top talent.
  • Boosting employee morale.
  • Standing out from your competitors.

You’ll be surprised by how critical giving back to your customers, community, and industry is as a first-year goal for your new business.

First-Year Goal for a New Business #2: Develop Customer Trust and Loyalty

When you start a new business, you cannot expect customers and clients to trust you immediately. They aren’t sure you are the real deal, so you have to show them you are a trusted advisor or provider in the market. Another first-year goal for your new business is establishing and building customer trust and loyalty.

One way you can start building that trust and loyalty from the start is by prioritizing your customers. Give them what they want. Do they have complaints or suggestions about your services or products? Are they asking for a specific service or product? Listen and take their advice. Also, remember you have the final say over a decision. It is still your company. But if enough customers complain about or suggest the same thing, it is best to heed the crowd’s advice so you can provide top-notch service to customers who will then recommend you.

Focus on offering excellent customer service, publishing customer reviews and testimonials, and being transparent with your customers. Focusing on this first-year goal for your new business will cultivate a positive relationship with your customers, thus gaining credibility, trust, and loyalty.  

First-Year Goal for a New Business #3: Develop Short and Long-Term Goals

Short-Term Goals

Another important first-year goal for your new business is developing your short and long-term goals. What do you want to achieve in the first month or 12 weeks of your business? What is the number one thing that needs to be done for your business now? Figure out what needs to be done, work toward that result, and move on to your next priority.

Setting key performance indicators, or KPIs, is the best way to organize your goals and objectives. These will help measure and track progress toward different, specific goals and keep you focused on your business. Prioritize what KPIs you are tracking because if you start measuring everything, you lose sight of your primary objectives.

[Related: How to Choose the Best KPIs For Your Business]

Long-Term Goals

Setting up long-term goals for your business is also an important first-year goal for your new business. You may only worry about your current issues because they are right in front of you, but if you don’t start mapping out the road ahead, you won’t have any direction for the future.

A lack of business planning is one of the main reasons why more than half of new businesses fail by their fifth year. Establish your long-term goals now and start slowly working toward them while you accomplish your short-term goals.

You’ll also want to check in with your goals regularly to see what is working and what isn’t. You should:

  • Review your business plan after every quarter.
  • Adjust your priorities where you see fit.
  • Plan for the next quarter.

You could even set monthly reviews with your management team as a quick check-in before your big quarterly meetings. Just make sure everything is in order.

First-Year Goal for a New Business #4: Establish Your Organization’s Core Values

Lastly, you’ll want to appoint your business’s core values. This is a great first-year goal for your new business, as these will be the foundation of your organization. You will use your core values to make hiring and firing decisions, guide short and long-term planning, and help your employees make judgment calls.

Core values help establish your company’s identity and act as pillars for company and employee growth. Receive professional insight when developing your company’s core values with the help of business coaches.

[Related: Why Are Core Values Important?]

Wolf Creek BGI Can Help Develop Your First-Year Goals for Your New Business

Need a strategy to help your business grow and develop during its first year? Contact Wolf Creek BGI. Our coaches can provide expert insight and actionable advice to create first-year goals for your new business. Call us at 225-219-8866 to start a business plan to bolster growth in your first year and beyond.