Every team needs goals. Goals can look like meeting targets, not going over budgets, and managing day-to-day operations for smooth workflow. Finance teams especially need goals to make sure that the financial aspects of the business are on track. Your finance team will be in charge of setting budgets, managing cash flow and predicting future expenses and profits of the company. So, it’s essential to set aside time for a goal-setting meeting to strategize on what the team’s objectives will look like for the upcoming months.
5 Tips on Setting Goals for Your Finance Team
Goals need to be clear, attainable, measurable and have a deadline. Here are 5 tips to keep in mind to have an effective goal-setting procedure with your finance team.
1. SMART framework is key
As a little refresher, SMART goals are specific, measurable, attainable, reliable and timely. This is one of the most popular methods teams use to identify and set goals because it gives a clear understanding of what the goal is, how goals will be met, and the time frame during which they should be completed. It’s important to note that the goals you set for the team should be achievable and can be measured.
2. Set deadlines and track progress
Establishing deadlines is a crucial step in setting goals because your team needs to know when they are expected to attain the targeted goal. Having a deadline will also help with prioritization. Additionally, as your team works toward the deadlines, they need to monitor their progress and make sure everything is up to speed. Tracking your progress helps determine when additional resources or extra time may be needed.
3. Offer incentives
Throwing in a little incentive can help the team be a little competitive and will drive them to achieve the set goal. At the end of the day, the team needs to work together to complete a project that will benefit the company overall. Incentives such as an extra day off or catered lunches during busy project weeks will definitely be appreciated by team members.
4. Identify and work with team members
Part of working with a team is knowing who will handle what part of the project. This means, as a leader, you need to identify who will handle the design, writing, monitoring, etc., on top of managing budgets and other financial aspects of the company. When it is clear to the team who oversees what, everyone will know who to go to during the different phases of the project, which allows for smooth transitions from start to end.
5. Provide feedback for improvement
When setting goals, it’s important to highlight collaboration successes and improvements. It’s a good idea to analyze what worked last time and what could be changed to improve efficiency with new projects. This feedback is useful to avoid mistakes and gives an area for asking for support and additional help if needed.
When you set goals, you provide the tools and guidelines necessary for your team to succeed. While every team member comes with their set of strengths, at the end of the day you are all working towards the same goal of leading the company to success.
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