Goal development and planning go hand in hand. One cannot think of goal development without preparing a plan to achieve those goals. The first step in goal development is to define individual goals. The ultimate objective of any individual or group is to achieve personal and career objectives. However, sometimes individuals do not know how to reach those goals.
An individual goal can be very vague, such as, “I want to become the best salesperson I can be.” To establish the most specific goals possible, an employee should develop a standard worksheet for goal setting. A goal-setting worksheet will contain specific categories that should be used when making goals. The categories can include objectives, measures, feedback, methods, and systems.
It is not uncommon for people to set goals that are too general, such as “become a highly organized person.” To make effective goal setting work, the goal-setting needs to be very specific, often taking into account factors beyond the individual’s control. These factors are important to consider in order to achieve the goal. If the goal is too broad, it is unlikely to be effective. However, if a person aims at “becoming the best salesperson, he can be,” this is a more reasonable goal.
A generic goal might be “become a valuable employee.” The problem with this goal is that it may apply to a large number of employees who might have vastly different skillsets and abilities. In addition, there are many employees who do not fit the broad description. An effective goal-setting worksheet for goal setting should be written specifically for the individual goals of a single employee.
Next, an employee should prepare a list of relevant metrics that need to be measured. Metrics are typically visual or numerical, and they provide information about what is being measured. For example, the key performance indicators for inventory consist of “how much is on hand.” When measuring a goal such as “become the best salesman possible,” it is important to state the desired end result in terms of a measurable quality rather than a vague numerical goal.
Planning For Goal Development
Finally, there is the topic of planning. Properly planned goals exhibit both organization and detail. They also exhibit a focus on the present and future. When management fails to properly plan, goals often fall by the wayside because of a lack of focus. To overcome this, employees should begin to learn about goal setting through online resources.
In short, the main components of goal setting are “the goal, the target date, the measurement tools, and the feedback from employees.” This is why, as stated earlier, the acronym SMART is so effective. These three components are all part of the three main aspects of goal setting: organization, measurement, and reporting. Goal setting is, therefore, an integral part of overall organizational strategy.
So what is the goal acronym SMART? SMART stands for “specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, timely.” Goals that fall under this category are those that management can measure with appropriate accuracy and in a timely manner. A concrete example of this goal would be “establishing a healthy workplace for staff members.” While this goal may seem relatively unimportant now, it could prove to be of tremendous importance down the road.
The next component that makes goal-setting worksheet items important is “the purpose.” While the reason why employees will be working toward a specific goal may be obvious, understanding what the end result of that goal is will prove to be crucial down the line. For instance, if a manager plans on implementing new sales training at his office, he should ask himself, “what will the new sales training achieve?” If he has a crystal clear understanding of the desired result, then he will be better able to set the proper expectations within his team.
Finally, the last component is “the impact of the goal.” This is very similar to the first component but in reverse. Since the impact is very important when it comes to goal achievement, it is also imperative to determine whether the impact will be positive or negative. By determining both negative and positive impacts, managers will be better equipped to determine what steps will need to be taken to make sure the organization achieves its goals. For instance, if the new sales training initiative is going to affect the sales staff negatively, then the manager will need to evaluate whether changing the way the employees are trained or doing a more targeted course will yield a more positive outcome.
Goal setting can be an effective tool when it comes to career development opportunities and employee goals. In order to make the process effective, however, there must be a measurement of the outcome as well as the collection of various other external factors. By following this format, managers will be able to take the necessary steps needed to successfully implement their goals. If you are looking to strengthen your current career, consider using goal setting to achieve each individual goal and to the overall organization. This will not only strengthen individual employees but will also create greater career development opportunities for everyone.