Are you looking to take your startup planning a step further? This monthly goals template will help you to plot out each month in detail. If you have done your Startup Planning Quarterly Goals and found it useful, our monthly goals template is a logical next step. Taking your planning to the next level will give you a clearer picture of what you need to do to reach your business goals for year one. It is a crucial year for any business, and you need to be prepared to tackle each challenge vigorously and methodically.
Why Do I Need Another Set of Goals?
1 – Connor’s Success Proves It
This monthly goals template was created based on Connor’s real-life experiences building multi-million dollar businesses. He developed and used it to create the goals and action steps that built his companies into what they are today. Connor is more of a long-term thinker, which is a great quality for an entrepreneur. When it comes down to the daily grind, however, an entrepreneur must also know how to recommit in the present. You may be more of the short-term thinker, and this is where the one-year vision and quarterly goals help you to stay focused. Regardless of what type you are, the day-to-day will still often be your worst enemy.
Connor has a core reason why he has so highly recommended this additional step of using a monthly goals template. He has experienced that creating monthly goals based on quarterly goals and a one-year vision helps maintain focus in the short term. Those golden years are a long way ahead, and the dream can easily fizzle out without a constant reminder of what needs to be done. The larger part of building a business is spent in the trenches, and it can be so dark and dreary down there. Connor has personally benefited from using a monthly goals template to manage the daily grind.
The monthly goals template is designed to make sure that you can stay on track. It has those exact, specific action steps that you need to take each week to push forward towards your quarterly goals. They are the real steps and goals that you can realistically tackle on a day-to-day and week-to-week basis. They also provide their own light as they encourage you by showing your progress and deliverables that you can tick off during shorter periods.
Finally, Connor uses the monthly goals template to make sure that he is being as efficient as possible every day and week of each month. He values his time very highly. The template makes sure that he is making the necessary progress to reach his quarterly, and ultimately, his first-year goals.
Connor also preaches monthly goals as a tool to use for motivating teams. A founder knows the big picture – he painted it! The team, however, may be a little short-sighted when it comes to the life of the business. Teams more easily relate to these specific, short-term goals. They are something that the team can grab hold of and use to push them through their assigned projects. When the team can clearly see what they need to accomplish over the next days and weeks, productivity skyrockets and so does their overall job fulfillment.
2 – It’s Good Business Sense
If you still have doubts about the usefulness of such an exercise, I’m here to tell you that it’s a very good use of your time. Entrepreneurs are always talking about value and scalability. You value your time and choose very carefully what you put your energy into. Your business is one of these things. You want to be able to launch a business that will stand the test of time. You want to be able to build a business that you can scale after the initial growing pains are over. If you are planning a startup, then you have already decided that it is worth the investment of your time, effort, and a number of other resources.
Now let me ask you, what at this point are you spending your time on? If you are a dedicated entrepreneur, then it’s probably ensuring that your business can go the distance. Creating specific and realistic goals and plotting out the steps that you are going to take to achieve them is a very large part of making this happen. Businesses don’t succeed because they were meant to – we are not in the business of taking shots in the dark! Businesses succeed because we do our homework and put our everything into turning knowledge into quantifiable deliverables – every day, every week, every month. There’s no rest for the wicked, er, startup entrepreneur!
You need to have a wicked awesome plan and you need to plan hard to create it. You need to have your goals and action steps. The more specific they are, the better. The monthly goals template exists because there is no room for slipshod decision-making. The mind of the entrepreneur who is determined to succeed knows that focus is essential. He knows that he needs to make calculated moves to birth a business that will retain its potential to thrive in the years to come. Otherwise, there is no sense at all in pouring your life into a startup.
Using the Monthly Goals Template
You know how important your one-year vision is. You know that you need those quarterly goals laid out. Your business needs you to lead it to its future success with a strong vision and those solid action steps. Now it’s time to go even further by creating a more detailed action plan. The monthly goals template below will help you to formulate mini goals under your main quarterly goals so you can see even more clearly what you want to accomplish. Each month represents a milestone in itself and has its own action steps that will guide your success.
Download your free copy of this monthly goals template and print it out. You can print in black and white, but I advise that you go for color. The color coding on the template will help you visualize where you are in the year and help you easily refer back to your quarterly goals. Each quarter’s color will guide you as you write out the specifics so that you will stay on theme. Your monthly milestones should always reflect what you are trying to achieve in your overarching goals.
Begin your detailed planning session by taking out your Startup Planning Quarterly Goals. Keep it next to you so you can refer back to it as you formulate your monthly goals. On your monthly goals template, you will see four rows for your four quarterly goals at the very top. Rewrite your quarterly goals into these spaces. If you have conducted any quarterly assessments that led to revisions, copy out your revised goals. Take a minute to read out the main goal for each quarter. Remember why you set this goal and focus on your commitment to achieve it.
Go back to your Quarter 1 Goal and think about the action steps that you created for it. Think about the milestone that your goal and action steps represent. Refer to these as written on your Quarterly Goals if needed. Again, take note of any adjustments that you have made post-assessment. You have now refreshed your memory of your complete set of goals, action steps, and their milestones. It’s time to parse them out into mini-milestones and action steps.
Take the first action step and think about the milestone that you are aiming to achieve. Now divide that milestone into three parts. The monthly goals template is linear in design, but you don’t necessarily have to parse your achievables in this manner. Some action steps will begin earlier and take more time to complete. Focus instead on the value of those milestones and what is needed to reach them. When you have them, write them into the first three milestone slots.
At this point, you can continue to fill out your mini-milestones or complete the exercise one quarter at a time. I recommend the latter since you can maintain a clear focus on the one goal before moving on to the next.
Mini Action Steps
Look closely now at the mini-milestones that you have distilled for each quarter. Focus on one quarter and think about the very specific steps that you are going to take to achieve them. These steps should fall specifically within each week of the month under those mini-milestones. These will essentially be your weekly goals for that month, written out in action form. You can write out goals, but action steps are so much more compelling. You will find this extra push to be extremely useful during those weeks when you wake up thinking, What the heck am I doing? What was I thinking?
When you have completed the first month – a.k.a. mini-milestone – move on to the second and the third for that quarter. When you are done, check back against your quarter goal for those three months. Do your specific actions remain true to your quarter goal? It is vital to the coherence of your plan that you define mini action steps that will complete the greater action steps under your quarter goal. If you think that your new actions steps are better, then go ahead and reevaluate your quarterly goals. You may not end up changing them, but you will now have greater clarity as to what you are aiming for and how to get there.
Put Your Goals into Action!
Your quarterly goals are a great tool to use as a guiding light that shines over each three-month period. It’s an inspirational guide that gives you a glimpse of what you are going for during this time. As you make your way through each quarter, however, a glimpse may not be enough to get you through each day and week. You may find yourself having trouble remembering how what you are doing this minute or this morning relates to that quarter goal. What are you doing now? How is this taking you closer to your quarter goal? Is this really one of the steps that you have to take to achieve that goal?
Use the monthly goals template to put your goals into action every day so that you can wake up ready to pump your business up to the next level. Your business is your baby – it needs your very best every day to grow into that magnificent beast of your entrepreneurial dreams.
Got your monthly goals all sorted out? Take your planning a step further with focused weekly goals stay motivated and keep track of the daily minutiae.