How to Write SMART Goals
Writing your goals
Okay, that's enough of the "deep and meaningful stuff". A little bit of introspection and navel gazing can do you good as long as you translate that new understanding into action. So let's get down to the nitty gritty task of writing your goals.
Top Tip - from my experience as a manager, people become impressively creative in the art of work avoidance when they are asked to do their goals!
Like clearing out the attic or weeding the garden, the more chaos and mess there is, the less you want to do it! The only instruction I can give is to stop procrastinating and just do it!
You'll be glad you did! People's main concern is often that the goals they had written were not "right". There is no such thing as a "right" goal, only what has meaning for you.
A goal that is written 70% well is better than no goal at all. Give yourself permission to give it a try, and worry about fine-tuning your goals later.
SMARTness in goals
The world and his wife generally expect that goals should be SMART. This is stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-bound, and is a useful reminder of how to write a top quality goal. Here's what it means...
Specific - your goal should have its expected outcome stated as simply, concisely and explicitly as possible. This answers questions such as; how much, for whom, for what?
Measurable - a measurable goal has an outcome that can be assessed either on a sliding scale (1-10), or as a hit or miss, success or failure.
Achievable - an achievable goal has an outcome that is realistic given your current situation, resources and time available. Goal achievement may be more of a "stretch" if the outcome is tough or you have a weak starting position.
Relevant - a relevant goal should help you on your mission or your "bigger" objectives.
Time-bound - a time-bound goal includes realistic timeframes.
Top Tip - You should limit your goals to between 5 and 7 at any one time. To achieve your goals you have to focus your efforts and attention. As you progress and complete goals, you may add new goals. If you find yourself with more than 7 goals, you are probably writing mini - goals or tasks. Remember to keep your goals focussed on a major area of responsibility.
A sample completed goal worksheet is included to show you how to lay out your goals. As you read through the following explanations, refer to the worksheet so that you can see how the theory has been put into practice.
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