How many times have you left a course or workshop armed with best intentions to put your goals into place, only to get caught back up in the busy-ness of work and life?
At the end of most development, the facilitator will ask you to consider your next steps, actions and commitments…sound familiar? Most of us have very good intentions although we often get back to the office with an overflowing inbox and deadlines to meet, meaning our best placed intentions simply fly out of the window.
Help is at hand
Let’s talk about goals…and yes we’ll remind ourselves of SMART objective setting while we’re at it! Setting goals is much more than just saying you want something to happen. How can you expect to achieve anything unless you clearly define your goal?
Here are some pointers to check your goals, objectives and action plans against:
Specific: Clearly define your goal in terms of what you want to achieve
Define precisely where you want to end up at
Measurable: Will changes be measured numerically or by behaviour
If unable to measure, how will you know when you’ve gotten there?
Achievable: It may sound silly, but make sure you can realistically achieve the goal!
Set goals that “raise the bar” within reasonable limits and that can be achieved with the resources available to you
Relevant: You need to believe that it is a worthwhile goal for where you are now
Goals should be relevant to the direction you want your life and career to take
Timebound: Your goals must have a deadline; no timeframe means that the end may never be achieved
Think about what you can do now, in the next six weeks, six months and so on
Without goals we lack focus and direction. Goal setting not only allows you to take more control of your life’s direction, it also provides you a benchmark for determining whether you are achieving what you want to.
Check-out whether your performance management process painfully or powerfully helps you to achieve your goals!
5 Golden Rules of Goal Setting
Set goals that motivate you
Set goals in writing
Make an action plan
Review it regularly
Check your progress and adapt your actions accordingly
So remember, the next time you receive some development and you’ve been asked to set objectives or write an action plan, really challenge yourself to create something that’s worthwhile and helps you to achieve your goals.