Freelancing is a fantastic way to give yourself the freedom and flexibility to work on your own terms. But with this comes the responsibility of managing your time and resources efficiently to succeed.
You’ll want to take advantage of the SMART method to stay organized and ensure that you’re making steady progress toward your goals. This article will explore various examples of relevant SMART goals for freelancers.
What is a SMART Goal?
The SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Time-based) framework will encourage freelancers to develop effective goals for career success.
Do you still need clarification? Here is a deeper dive into each SMART component:
The more specific your freelance goals are, the better your chances of reaching them. Outline what you hope to achieve—this could include any number of things, like gaining more clients or expanding into new areas of expertise.
Having measurable goals pushes freelancers to focus their energy on reaching them. It also clarifies what needs to be done and how long it will take to meet those desired results. This means creating objectives with a tangible outcome in mind so that these benchmarks can be monitored over time.
Break down each goal into smaller steps to become manageable tasks that can be ticked off as completed. This will give you a clear roadmap, which will help keep up the momentum and further boost your likelihood of success.
Setting goals that align with your core values can be effective because when you make sure your goals reflect what matters most to you, it is easier to stay energized and keep going even when times get tough.
Establishing a timeline is an excellent way to be sure you stay the course. It’s easy to get lost in the daily hustle and bustle, but if you create a plan and timeline that works with your lifestyle, you’ll be able to stay accountable and attain your objectives.
12 SMART Goals Examples for Freelancers
Below you will discover some examples of SMART goals for freelancers:
1. Boost Your Income
“I want to increase my income by 20% by the end of 10 months. To do this, I will use marketing and sales tactics to find and close new clients, increase my hours of availability, and optimize my pricing structure.”
Specific: The SMART goal is to increase your income by 20%.
Measurable: You can track the percentage increase in your income on a regular basis.
Attainable: This goal can be achieved with the proper marketing and sales tactics.
Relevant: Freelancers should always be looking for ways to increase their income.
Time-based: You’ve set a timeline of 10 months to reach this goal.
2. Manage Finances Effectively
“As a freelancer, I want to manage my finances effectively by the end of the next quarter. I will research and implement best practices for tracking income and expenses, setting financial goals, and creating a budget.”
Specific: The statement is well-defined, detailing the objective and how to accomplish it.
Measurable: Ensure you follow the listed action items for success.
Attainable: This can be easily accomplished with the right resources and research.
Relevant: This goal is essential for freelancers since it will help them stay on track with their finances.
Time-based: The goal has a specific timeline of one quarter.
3. Stick to a Schedule
“I will keep a consistent schedule and stick to it for 6 months. I’ll ensure that I start work every day at the same time and finish work by a specific deadline. This will help me stay productive and organized, maximize productivity, and reach my goals faster.”
Specific: You have precise actions available—start work at the same time every day and finish by a particular deadline.
Measurable: You must stick to this schedule for at least 6 months.
Attainable: Depending on the amount of work you have and your personal discipline, this is a reasonable goal to set.
Relevant: This goal will help you stay productive and organized as a freelancer.
Time-based: You should expect to achieve success in 6 months.
4. Increase Client Base
“I want to increase my client base by 25% in 9 months. I’ll reach out via social media, networking events, and online forums. I’ll also follow up with potential clients and ensure they receive updates on my services.”
Specific: Reaching out to potential clients via social media, networking events, and online forums.
Measurable: The number of clients gained should increase by 25%.
Attainable: This is achievable if the freelancer invests the time and effort to network appropriately.
Relevant: This goal is suitable for any freelancer who wants to increase their client base.
Time-based: The 9-month timeline will encourage success.
5. Improve Communication With Clients
“I want to improve my communication with clients by introducing weekly check-ins and sending out a monthly newsletter that provides project updates for this quarter. That will allow me to keep up with my projects and build stronger client relationships.”
Specific: The aim is to enhance communication with clients.
Measurable: You’ll introduce weekly check-ins and a monthly newsletter with project updates.
Attainable: Most freelancers have enough resources to update clients weekly and monthly.
Relevant: The goal of improving client communication is relevant to the freelancer’s business.
Time-based: Goal achievement is expected after this quarter.
6. Enhance Networking Skills
“I aim to sharpen my networking skills by attending monthly events related to my industry and connecting with at least one new contact from whom I can learn. By the end of the year, I aim to have a strong network of contacts that can help me grow as a freelancer.”
Specific: The person aims to attend monthly events related to their industry and connect with at least one new contact.
Measurable: This is measurable because you’ll actively track the number of contacts they make.
Attainable: This statement is feasible because it’s realistic and doesn’t require too much of the person’s time and energy.
Relevant: The goal is appropriate because it focuses on developing a solid network of contacts from which the person can learn.
Time-based: You have given yourself one year to accomplish the goal.
7. Develop Professional Knowledge
“I will take two online courses to develop my professional knowledge this year. These classes will help me become a more valuable asset to the company, allowing me to take on more responsibilities and tasks.”
Specific: Online courses are the chosen method to expand knowledge on a particular subject.
Measurable: Completing two online classes this year is the measure of success.
Attainable: It is possible to complete two courses in one year, depending on the length of each.
Relevant: Professional knowledge will help improve performance and take on more responsibilities at work.
Time-based: You have until the end of the year to finish two courses on a relevant topic.
8. Set Priorities for Yourself
“To stay organized and on top of my workload, I’ll prioritize tasks and projects on a daily basis. This will also ensure that I take care of the most important tasks first and not get bogged down with less important ones.”
Specific: The SMART goal details the objective and the timeline for completion.
Measurable: You should ideally count the number of tasks you complete daily.
Attainable: This goal is achievable since it is realistic to prioritize tasks daily.
Relevant: Organizing and prioritizing your workload will enable you to remain productive.
Time-based: It is implied the goal is ongoing, so you should pursue it regularly.
9. Automate Routine Tasks
“I will automate three routine tasks by the end of next month. This will save me time and allow me to focus my energy on complex tasks that require more attention. I hope to meet my deadlines more efficiently and with greater accuracy.”
Specific: You have chosen three tasks that will be automated.
Measurable: Ensure you count the number of automated tasks completed by the end of each week.
Attainable: The freelancer has identified a timeline to complete their goal, which is absolutely doable.
Relevant: Automating routine tasks can help freelancers save time and focus on more critical tasks.
Time-based: One month is required to accomplish this particular goal.
10. Minimize Distractions
“In order to increase my productivity and efficiency, I will limit distractions and interruptions during work hours by ensuring all notifications are turned off on my devices and that my workspace is free from any unnecessary clutter by the end of the month.”
Specific: The goal outlines what needs to be done (turning off notifications, clearing workspace) and when you need to do it (by the end of the month).
Measurable: You can measure how many notifications you turned off and the amount of clutter removed from your workspace.
Attainable: Limiting distractions and interruptions is a task that can be done.
Relevant: Minimizing distractions can help you increase productivity and efficiency.
Time-based: The goal should be completed by the end of the month.
11. Develop Self-Care Habits
“I will take at least 30 minutes daily to focus on my physical, mental, and emotional health. That includes getting enough sleep and exercising regularly. By establishing a routine for self-care, I can better take care of myself and be more productive in my work.”
Specific: The SMART goal is explicit because it establishes a routine for self-care that includes getting enough sleep and exercising regularly.
Measurable: The person can measure the number of hours they spend on self-care daily.
Attainable: Establishing a routine for self-care is achievable for anybody.
Relevant: Self-care habits are a pertinent goal for freelancers to improve their productivity.
Time-based: This goal statement is ongoing, so you must pursue it daily.
12. Build an Online Presence
“For the 6 months ahead, I aim to have a consistent online presence as a freelancer. I plan to have an active website, engage in social media, and use keyword-focused content to reach potential clients.”
Specific: Creating your online presence involves creating a website, engaging in social media, and using keyword-focused content.
Measurable: Count how many followers you’ve gained, monitor your social media analytics, and track website traffic.
Attainable: It is possible to build an effective online presence in 6 months.
Relevant: A great and consistent online presence will allow you to promote your services to clients.
Time-based: Your goal has a 6-month end date for success.
The SMART framework is an invaluable tool for freelancers. Freelancers can set themselves up for success in any project by creating these goals.
With the right mindset and dedication, freelancers can increase their motivation and self-discipline, leading to greater satisfaction from both the process and the outcome of their work.
You will finally be able to stay hyper-focused and organized while tackling complex tasks in an ever-changing landscape of opportunities.
This post may feature products and services that we think you’ll find useful. Please read our disclosure for more information.