We’ve all been there.
“My New Year’s resolution is to get in shape,”
“…to read more,”
“…to eat better,”
“…to start saving my money.”
It is said with the best of intentions. You and yours may toast to each-other’s respective resolutions come midnight on New Year’s Eve. The champagne bubbles in your flute fittingly mimic your joyous sentiment at the idea of turning a new leaf. Ahhhh, to new beginnings!
And that first week of January, you probably are even doing pretty well holding up your end of the bargain. But by the time Groundhog’s Day rolls around, you’ve settled back into the old routines of yesteryear.
The thing that makes a simple resolution (i.e. to get in shape) difficult to maintain is the lack of accountability and measurable outcome. This is why I recommend SMART goals.
SMART goals are highly motivating, clear-as-day declarations of the who, what, when, where, why, and how of your desired outcome. An effective tool for anybody, personally and professionally, I also suggest the use of SMART goals alongside performance reviews.
When applied to performance reviews, the SMART model allows employees and their supervisors to communicate clearly and go forth with their desired outcomes as a unit. The supervisor can act as an accountability partner for their direct report, checking in on the measurable items and milestones associated with their goal.
The beauty of implementing SMART goal-setting in appraisals is that it aligns with overall objectives, working in the favor of your business’ best interests while greatly motivating employees. One could set a goal to “run faster,” but they are likely to reach a more desirable outcome if they can see the finish line in sight and have a time to beat. SMART goals are more effective than simple goals because they are highly targeted with a clear finish line.
How to Set a SMART Goal
Whether you’re gearing up for a personal New Year refresh or prepping to administer routine performance reviews, setting a SMART goal is, aptly named, a smart decision.
Start with a desired outcome or simple goal. I want to write more.
Now, it’s time to school that simple goal to make it SMART.
Actually, SMART is an acronym.
I want to write more blog posts for Wigging Out About HR.
I want to write five blogs post per week for Wigging Out About HR.
Okay, I’m a one-woman show. Five posts per week is certainly too ambitious.
I want to write two blog posts per month for Wigging Out About HR.
I want to write two blog posts per month for Wigging Out About HR, so that I can provide quality current content to my followers while supporting my marketing efforts.
My New Year’s resolution is to write two blog posts per month for Wigging Out About HR. I will check on my progress each quarter for accountability. At the end of each quarter, I will have at least six new posts completed.
My goal is specific, measurable, attainable, relevant to my over-all objectives, and time-bound. This provides me with a crystal-clear outline of what I need to do and when I need to do it. And for bonus points, I’m going to give myself a reward! If by the end of 2020 I have written 24 blog posts, I will treat myself to a spa day.
There are countless times in business and in our busy personal lives when we can benefit from the clarity and accountability of a SMART goal.
I’ve made a complimentary SMART Goal Worksheet to get you started. Be a goal-getter and hop to it!