How SMART Are Your Goals?
It’s important to set goals – that’s common knowledge. Goals help us reach for and achieve new growth in our lives and businesses. But when you set goals, do you (and your employees) know exactly what you’re striving for, and when you’ve accomplished your goals? Are your goals clear and actionable?
In order for you and your team to accomplish your goals effectively, you must have SMART goals. SMART is an acronym that stands for:
Let’s break down SMART goals.
Effective goals include a clear and concise statement of what is to be accomplished and, in some cases, how it is to be achieved. Both of these things should be stated in specific terms. For example:
- Increase sales by 10% for next year
- Increase sales from $1,250,000 to 1,450,000 over the next twelve months.
- To accomplish this, I will:
- Promote one apprentice on January 1st
- Begin 15-minute weekly sales coaching sessions with each technician starting December 1st
- initiate a monthly incentive program beginning December 1st.
All goals should be measurable; they should be objectively verifiable and related to key performance indicators (KPIs). Objective measures are the only means by which it can be fairly determined whether goals have or have not been accomplished.
Your goals must be achievable for them to be meaningful. It’s not helpful to set a goal for every technician to sell $1,000,000 per year if the highest-selling technician is only selling $250,000 per year.
Your goals should contain a stretch factor to challenge your team, yet still be realistic.
For instance, if you have a technician who usually sells $295,000 per year, would you set their goal at $295,000 or $325,000, a 10% increase? Which is a better goal?
Personal goals should be directly aligned with the goals of the company and with other dependent parts of the company. That is, they should be balanced across the various functions of the organization and its customers. It should also be clear how these goals are incorporated into the “big picture” goals of the company.
Effective goals always include a specific date for completion. Using deadlines helps the organization as a whole to do a better job at coordinating the efforts of multiple work groups and individuals. The goal must have a beginning and an ending date.
When a goal is SMART, it’s set up for success! With SMART goals, you and your employees will know exactly what you’re shooting for and know the steps that must be taken to achieve great results.