A target milestone shows an important achievement in the progress of a target. The milestones should represent a clear sequence of events that incrementally build up until your target has been achieved. Target milestones are a way of knowing how the business plan is advancing, especially if you’re not familiar with the tasks being executed. They have zero duration because they symbolize an achievement or a point of time in a project. Since a milestone’s start and end date depends on a target’s start and end date, task association is a major feature of a milestone.
A plan remains sound only if progress is regularly reassessed, and contains targets, progress points, and target milestones – all tools to help you stay on track to achievement. And the only thing worse than a misaligned idea is a poorly communicated idea, so be sure to have a way of sharing targets and milestones with your team.
So, you’ve done your due diligence, mapped out your goals, and set targets/target milestones to get you there. And you’ve shared these goals with your managers and staff during the most-recent staff meeting. It’s now time to execute!
Between you and your end result lie mile markers to indicate your progress. Consider the sample goal of increasing revenue. Your target is specifically $100,000 this month over the same month last year (not the previous month). Understanding this is a 30-day goal that requires a specific numerical increase in revenue, what can be done to ensure the goal is reached by the defined end date?
Focusing on the target of $100k towards the goal of increasing revenue, the answer is progress checkpoints, target milestones, and constant communication. In other words, the target is a monthly target, which can be broken down into daily or even weekly checkpoints. Moreover, there are some tasks, or target milestones to put in place in order to achieve our target, and these also need to be managed if the ultimate goal is to be met. And as there is more than 1 person responsible for hitting the target and goal, everyone accountable needs to be kept up to date.
Progress Check Point: While the target is set for monthly growth, this can be broken down into daily or weekly increments. With a target of $100k for the month, each Friday’s progress report should indicate a $25k increase. By the end of week 2, at least $50k in revenue should be realized, and so on. As you reach these checkpoints, you’ll know if you’re on track or need to regroup, look at target milestones, or possibly restructure your targets and goal.
Target Milestone: With checkpoints in place to ensure you are working steadily toward the attainment of your target and goal, you’ll want to ensure you have the right administrative tasks in place to actually attain them. These target milestones are the tasks you’ll have to complete in order to reach your target. This could include hiring additional personnel, purchasing technology, or implementing a new sales/marketing strategy.
Constant Communication: Here’s where continued alignment comes in – as you reach checkpoints and achieve milestones, you’ll want to ensure you have a process for communicating updates to your team (or the specific members included in the goal). Create alerts for yourself and staff to receive as progress toward the target is made. Empower everyone involved by sharing updates and allowing the team to provide updates as to why you’re on track/not on track, and what can be done to improve further. This eliminates month-end surprises and successfully sets everyone’s expectation
It’s no surprise that all of the above can be achieved through the use of a business intelligence tool like AtlasKPI’s Practice Management Dashboard. Creating visual targets, adding target milestones, and creating alerts that provide your team with incremental progress are just a few of the tools Atlas provides to small businesses, helping them reach their goals and find success.