Staples Makes Goal Setting Easy for Small Businesses in 2010

Framingham, Massachussetts (PRESS RELEASE – January 17, 2010) – Setting New Year’s resolutions for the office is easier said than done. Once clients start calling and deadlines loom, those wishful goals soon get lost in the daily grind of completing the tasks at hand. Staples (NASDAQ: SPLS), is now making it easy for small businesses to set, track and achieve professional goals. Teaming with the goal-setting experts at, Staples is launching the Staples stickK to It! Business Challenge, a unique program to help small businesses prioritize and achieve their objectives for the New Year. Whether it’s one simple goal like organizing a desk or tackling larger challenges such as overhauling a business plan, Staples encourages professionals to sign up for the Staples stickK to It! Business Challenge to commit to improving their businesses today.

The goals small businesses set in 2010, and their success in achieving them, are crucial to the nation’s economic recovery. According to the 4th Annual Staples National Small Business Survey, more than 80 percent of small-business owners admit they don’t monitor their goal-setting or enlist the proper “coaches” and advisors to help them achieve their goals. As the economy turns around in 2010, small businesses will be eager to return to growth and jumpstart projects put on hold during the recession. Staples wants to make it easy for them to prioritize their objectives, and with the Staples stickK to it! Business Challenge, Staples is setting its own goal of changing the lives of one million small businesses by giving them a platform for success.

“January is an important month for small businesses with new employees, new budgets and new challenges to get organized and start the year off right,” said John Giusti, vice president of small business marketing at Staples. “Our goal with the Staples stickK to It! Business Challenge is to offer an easy platform to help small businesses harness their energy and begin 2010 with a roadmap for achieving success.”

How It Works

From Jan. 12- April 12, small-business professionals will be able to log on to to sign-up for free to be part of the Staples stickK to It! Business Challenge. To help achieve goals, users create a Commitment Contract, a promise by a user to reach a goal. The Commitment Contract concept, based on incentives and accountability, was invented by after years of research in behavioral economics.

“We’ve found that everyone starts off wanting to achieve their goal, but most of the time there is nothing out there to make them stickK to their word,” said Ian Ayers, co-founder of “By entering into a commitment contract, backing out becomes harder – ‘commitment’ and ‘contract’ are two words that resonate with people and keep them committed to achieving their goals.”

Participants choose from five different goal setting focus areas on 1) Get Organized/Increase Productivity; 2) Professional Development; 3) Maximize Your Bottom Line; 4) Green Your Office; and 5) Improve Working Environment. Once they select a focus area, participants select specific commitments and personalize them to best fit their needs and objectives. Next, they choose someone to be their referee- a colleague or friend who will monitor their progress and support them along the way. Then, users will start earning EasyPoints as they make progress and report on their goals and can then redeem the EasyPoints for Staples products and services. The last step is achieving success. If users follow the Commitment Contract framework, as the model has found, they will be well on their way to accomplishing their goals.

About Staples

Staples, the world’s largest office products company, is committed to making it easy for customers to buy a wide range of office products, including office supplies, technology, furniture, and business services. With 2008 sales of $23 billion and 91,000 associates worldwide, Staples serves businesses of all sizes and consumers in 27 countries throughout North and South America, Europe, Asia and Australia. In July 2008, Staples acquired Corporate Express, one of the world’s leading suppliers of office products to businesses and institutions. Staples invented the office superstore concept in 1986 and is headquartered outside Boston. More information about Staples (Nasdaq: SPLS) is available at

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