Business Strategy and PlanningEntrepreneurs

How SMART Goals Can Improve Problem-Solving Skill for Entrepreneurs

Being in the entrepreneurship area can be quite challenging and complex since it requires a wide range of knowledge and skills, such as leadership, networking, communication and problem solving. As entrepreneurs grow a business, they need to find ways for continuous improvement to achieve their desired goal of success. For this, they require strong problem-solving skills. SMART goals serve as a tool for entrepreneurs to enhance their problem-solving skills.

What are SMART goals?

Entrepreneurs use SMART goals as a technique that provides them with a framework to set goals clearly. SMART goals stand for specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound. With the elements found in the SMART goals, it will help them to focus and stay on track throughout entrepreneurial progress in reaching goals.

Ways SMART goals can improve problem-solving skills


The goals should be specific, which means that they clearly define what the entrepreneur wants to achieve. For example, when the goal is to enhance the mobile user experience, identify the metrics that need improvement, such as loading times, useful features, a better user interface (UI), offline modes or personalized recommendations.


Since SMART goals are measurable, entrepreneurs can track their progress and determine whether they are making progress towards their objectives. This could include, for example, the customer satisfaction score (CSAT), key performance indicators (KPIs) and metrics for productivity.


Entrepreneurs are required to set goals that should be reachable and realistic according to their capabilities. For example, a startup company could target getting 80 customers, but this depends on what they are doing. Setting this target requires knowing their ideal customers and thorough market research so that entrepreneurs can realistically reach the target. When they identify their target or goals and are able to consistently meet them, it will build confidence and momentum to keep going.


SMART goals are relevant, which implies they have a direct relationship to the entrepreneur’s business and objectives. For example, when entrepreneurs decide to launch a new product line, they should ensure that the goals are relevant to market demands and brand identity. If not, they may fail to capitalize on market opportunities, meet customer expectations, or achieve their business objectives effectively.


Not only SMART goals, but every goal should have its own deadline so that it will help entrepreneurs maintain focus, accountability, and a sense of urgency. Without deadlines, entrepreneurs might procrastinate, preventing them from achieving their goals.

What are the steps to solving problems?

To solve problems effectively, apply principles such as specificity, measurability, achievability, relevance, and a time-bound nature that are found in SMART goals.

According to experts, here’s how:

  1. Identify the problem clearly.
  2. Collect relevant data, facts, and insights that are related to the problem
  3. Generate as many solutions as possible through brainstorming and then pick some of the best ones
  4. Evaluate solutions by finding out the strengths, weaknesses, risks, and rate of success of each potential solutions
  5. From the evaluation, choose the most suitable solution that aligns with the goals and execute it
  6. Set SMART goals for the chosen solution. Be specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound.
  7. Evaluate the results for solution effectiveness.
  8. Repeat and improve if needed.

How to know if one has mastered problem-solving skills?

It can be as easy as finding the solution to the problem, but that is not always the case. Finding solutions within a short amount of time and reaching goals are good but there are other things to be considered. Is the solution the most effective? Will the solution last long-term?

Here are some of the few signs:

  • Able to clearly define and understand the problem
  • Data collected is relevant to the problem
  • Identified the most effective solutions to various kind of problems
  • Generates original, innovative solutions for complex problems


SMART goal is a valuable tool for entrepreneurs to use in their entrepreneurial journey so that they could seamlessly get through it. By integrating SMART goals, it provides a guideline that helps improve problem-solving skills a lot more. Entrepreneurs can consider setting SMART goals to improve their problem-solving skills, which can build confidence in managing their own businesses.

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