Setting goals is an important part of running a successful business today. Many businesses like to use the SMART goal setting process. By using this process it is possible to come up with an easy to execute plan.
SMART stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Timely.
As you can see this process can help you set realistic and attainable goals. Let’s go through these processes in more detail.
Specific goals are the best kind of goal to set and much better than just setting a very general goal. When you focus on just one specific goal it helps everyone involved attain it. This is extremely important for employees. Giving them just one goal to reach at a time helps you to eliminate confusion and obstacles that would otherwise get in the way.
Measurable means putting things in place that will help you measure the progress of the goal. This could be adding a completion date to the goal or it could having everyone involved track their progress on a spreadsheet. Being measurable helps both employers and employees stay on track.
Attainable means setting a goal which can be reached. While it is perfectly acceptable to set lofty or big goals. It does not help anyone if this goal is so big that it doesn’t motivate the players. A business can lose time, money and resources by setting unreachable goals, plus it doesn’t help with employee morale.
Relevancy helps to keep everyone on track by giving them the same core values. When employees care about their place of employment they are more motivated to help make things happen. One reason why it is important to ensure that your employees are happy!
Timely goals keep everyone on track. This is where having a finish date for the goal is important. It is also part of human nature to want to know when this task will end. It makes it easier for someone to work overtime if they know it is only for a month during the busy season. Setting timely goals provides people with a sense of urgency and helps them keep things in perspective.
The above steps are those that are put into place by using the SMART system. While many businesses swear by this system, some say that more is needed and that this process is actually missing a step.
The missing step involves evaluating your goals at regular intervals. Evaluating is different to measuring your goals. When a goal is evaluated it is looked at to see if the actions that are being taken are actually working or not. During the evaluation progress if things are found to be not working, then action steps can be put into place to change the direction of the goal.
The evaluation step is not just a onetime thing. Good business owners will realize that goals need to be continually evaluated until they have been accomplished.
Business goals change for a variety of reasons including due to the current economy and due to expansions in the business. There may be a huge change in management and this can be reflected in the goals of the company.
A company that has constantly evaluated their goals will have no problem with resetting goals as necessary. Goal setting is part of the growth of any company and having motivated employees will help these goals become a reality.
Use the processes outlined in this article to set goals and to get everyone onto a common ground. Remember not to forget about adding the evaluation step into your new goal setting plan.
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