In Setting Goals (is hard), I set a personal goal to get one more customer for my business.  And, per our guidelines, this was a SMART goal.

It was specific.  The customer had to be a new account worth $10,000 or more.

It was measurable.  It’s pretty easy to tell if we’ve added that one customer or not.

It was achievable.  In our industry, it is a bit ambitious to add a customer within 2 months, but it is possible.

It was relevant.  It is very important to us to be able to serve more people.  Not only will this allow us to continue to exist, but it will allow our solutions to continue to change the world.

And finally, it was time-bound.  This goal had an expiration date of last night.

Today I get to share our results.  We failed.  We did not land add a single new customer as defined above.

Just because a goal is SMART does not make it a slam dunk.  And, just because a goal isn’t SMART doesn’t mean it isn’t a good goal.

So what happened?

I didn’t focus.  Like my friend John Lee Dumas at EOFire always  says, Follow One Course Until Success.  I didn’t do this.

Although getting a new customer was very important to me, it was not the most important thing I had going on in this same time frame.  First, we had our first trade show that we were getting ready for.  Second, we are continuing to on-board a new team member.  Third, we had Christmas, but that should have been obviated by having an additional month.  Fourth, I was very focused on addressing some serious needs of one of our existing customers.

If I were to loosen my metrics a little (umm…cheat), I could claim success…but that’s a total wimp out (and lacks integrity).  We are waiting for some contracts from a couple of new customers and we did sign a new contract with an existing customer.  But these do not meet the guidelines that I set and I did not meet my goal.

I did not focus.  With each task, I did not ask myself, “is this getting me closer to my goal?”  Much of what I did got me closer to another goal (and I did accomplish some fantastic things in the last two months), I did not accomplish this goal.

This is not a time to beat myself up.  I need to learn from my mistake and do better next time.