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The Leadership Quest Blog

Effective Goal Planning

April 25, 2018

Effective Goal Planning_Article

I’ve read many articles that mention the number of people who practice effective goal planning, and here is what I know: the number is incredibly low, somewhere between 5 – 10%. I’ve even read articles that state the number of businesspeople practicing effective goal planning is as low as 1.5 – 2%.

It doesn’t matter where you stand on the subject, or what you’ve done in the past. It’s always an appropriate time to think about goal planning.

Ideally, the leader of the organization starts with their own goals, and publishes them to the next level of management, which in turn builds their goals and objectives that trickle down the organization. That’s in an ideal world, and we don’t all live in an ideal world.

You must adjust your goal planning process to your own organization, but here is a universally used format that will help. Many of you are familiar with the acronym, S.M.A.R.T. goals:

Specific. Your goal should be specific enough for anyone to read and understand what it is you plan to achieve.

Measurable. Include measurements; whether it’s a measurement of revenue, customer satisfaction, etc.

Attainable. This can also stand for achievable or accountable. Ensure that your goal is completely, 100% in your sphere of influence, meaning that you don’t need help or guidance from other departments or people.

Realistic. Your goal should be realistic, but also stretch your limits.

Time-bound. I’m a big believe of weekly, monthly, and at the most, quarterly goals. Certainly not yearly. Your goals can build to a yearly goal, but the duration should not extend past a quarter, because as we know, we all have the tendency to procrastinate. That just doesn’t work for effective goal attainment.

Remember to write your goals in a S.M.A.R.T. format, start your goal planning at the top of the organization, and let the goals cascade down through the organization.

Do you need help with goal setting, or have a question? Email me: 

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