Business-people know the importance of setting objectives. Indeed, it's one of the key items in building an export plan. But it's also important to get a measure of that objective.

Typical goals may be:

  • More sales
  • More customers
  • Higher profits
  • Reduced cost-of-sales
  • Bigger market share
  • Greater brand awareness

All really sound objectives. These probably embody the reasons why businesses are getting into export in the first place.

Key questions

However, there are two questions we should ask of our goal:

  • By how much?
  • By when?

We need to quantify them, even based upon gut instinct, if they are to be useful.

If you ask someone, 'How much more sales do you need?' - the instant response may be, 'As much as I can get.'  But after a moment's though it's clear the impact that may have. Resource, cash-flow, delivery times, support etc. may all be massively affected. 

Similarly, timescale is important. Securing 100 new customers tomorrow may be an impossible task, and put huge strains on the business. Finding 10 per month over the next 10 months can be planned and managed.

Take a look at the checklist on objective setting. If it flags up resource issues for you, check out the time, skills and budget list.

Better still,  choose an export package option to kickstart your international business.



Ian West