How to Successfully Set SMART Goals

Setting goals is a great way to keep your business on track with a clear path ahead. We recommend setting goals at the beginning of each plan year to help you flourish in the year to come.

While big and small goals are useful for different purposes, setting SMART goals may be the extra step you need to take to help your business thrive. What are SMART goals? To be considered a SMART goal, it must fit the following criteria: specific, measurable, achievable, relative, and timely. We’ll show you how this pertains to you as an insurance agent and how setting them can take your business from mediocre to booming.

Specific

A goal that is too large or too broad may seem difficult to achieve. While we want to encourage agents to dream big, setting specific goals to propel you forward will be more effective. When trying to specify your goal, see if you can answer these five questions: What do I want to accomplish? Why is this goal important? Who is involved? Where is it located? Which resources or limits are involved?

Ask yourself these questions: What do I want to accomplish? Why is this goal important? Who is involved? Where is it located? Which resources or limits are involved?

Let’s say your goal is to build client loyalty. Define what you need to do to accomplish that, what additional resources you may need, and why you want to do so. For example, you could make a goal to wish each of your clients a happy birthday when the time comes, which will make them feel connected, appreciated, and more likely to choose you as their agent again in the future. By having specific answers to the above questions, your goal will be more clearly defined and therefore, more attainable. That way, you won’t feel like your goal lacks direction or purpose.

Measurable

Being able to measure your goal comes with similar benefits as the specificity mentioned above, such as providing you with an objective. One of the great reasons measuring your goal comes in handy is because you will be able to clearly track your progress. When making sure your goal is measurable, think in terms of “how many” or “how much” and the indicator you’d like to use to quantify your progress.

You could say, “This month, I’d like to submit 20 applications.” A good way of breaking that down could be five applications per week. You could go a step even further and say you want to submit one application per business day. Breaking a goal down into measurable, trackable sections helps you hold yourself accountable and know where you want to be each day/week/month to achieve your goal.

Achievable

One way to think of making a goal achievable is to consider if it’s realistic. Contemplate if you have the necessary resources to achieve your goal in mind. Has it been done before? Or is it completely out of reach? Going back to the previous example, it would be unrealistic to want to submit 2,000 applications in a month. While you can make this goal measurable, it would break down to about 66 applications per day. While that goal is quite ambitious, to achieve that every day over and over would most likely lead to burnout. We want you to be the best agent you can possibly be, but it’s important to take care of yourself and know what you are physically capable of doing.

Relevant

Making sure your goal is relevant means it has to have meaning to you. A relevant goal is one that is worthwhile to you and will help you feel fulfilled once it’s achieved. It can also be related to your personal or professional growth. A great example of a relevant goal would be passing your AHIP certification.

You need your AHIP certification to sell most Medicare Advantage or prescription drug plans to your clients during the Annual Enrollment Period (AEP). Without it, you’d be selling yourself short because it would limit the plans you are allowed to sell. Obtaining your certification would make you a more versatile and educated agent – something clients love to see!

Timely

When considering if a goal is timely, think to yourself, “Does it make sense for me to do this now?” If yes, proceed! If not, maybe rethink and rework the goal you had in mind. In the same way that you can quantify your goal in numbers, you can also have a start and end date to keep you on track. Going back to AHIP certification, most carriers have a deadline for which you must complete and pass the test, so in that case, the deadline has been decided for you.

If the goal’s time constraints aren’t quite as strict, create them for yourself to keep you motivated. Say you want to set up a fully equipped home office. You could say, “By next week, I want to have a printer set up and working.” The week after that, you could have a desk put together and so on. Breaking down your goal into smaller time-bound sections will make it seem less daunting and more realistically achievable.

Breaking down your goal into smaller time-bound sections will make it seem less daunting and more realistically achievable.

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It’s OK if not every single goal you set for yourself checks all these boxes. Setting goals can be kind of intimidating, especially if you put a lot of pressure on yourself to accomplish them. By following these guidelines and asking yourself the right questions, you can reach the goals you want to achieve. It never hurts to have a great FMO like Ritter Insurance Marketing in your corner, and registering is completely free. We are here to help you fulfill your goals and provide guidance every step of the way!

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