HOW TO ESTABLISH GOALS AND SET EXAMPLES TO YOUR EMPLOYEES?
Establishing goals is not an easy task – especially if you wish them to actually be achieved. A recent study showed that only half the organizations effectively work to define individual performance goals.
If anytime you have already wondered why it is so difficult to achieve business goals, now you’ll know the reason. In this post, we approach how you can and should proceed to create, establish and set examples of individual goals to your employees, in order to improve motivation, satisfaction and productivity in the organizational environment.
Enjoy your reading!
How to establish and set examples of individual goals
Define “when” and “how”
Understanding the difference between a goal and a good idea is a very relevant first step. Let’s say you need to draw up a marketing plan for launching a new product. You may start your goal setting plan from that task, writing “Draw up a marketing plan to promote product XPTO”.
But there is a catch: something established like that is not an actual goal. It is only a good idea. It would be a good idea to create a marketing plan, but how does that translate into an actual goal? Easy! Effective goals must include the description of “how” and “when”.
As it is an unfinished sentence, the good idea does not provide information enough to be, in itself, a goal. Thus, a timeline and guidelines must be added thereto, so it becomes feasible, in practice.
If written as a goal, that same good idea may get much better.
Note this example of an individual goal based on that idea:
“Prepare, by Friday, the first version of the marketing plan for product XPTO, containing from 3 to 5 pages and dedicating about 30 minutes daily to the task”.
Align employees goals with global company goals
Managers are not there only to help employees to achieve their own professional goals. Ideally, those goals are aligned with global organizational goals.
However, such alignment may get difficult if you don’t understand the strengths, weaknesses and the elements able to motivate your team.
Devise ways to increase communication, mainly while major projects are in progress, and follow the progress of each employee, to identify weaknesses and aspects to be improved.
When employees understand how their functions and individual responsibilities contribute to general growth, they tend to get more focused in attaining goals that benefit themselves and the company.
Thus, consistently communicating your business strategic goals (by emphasizing and highlighting values and management culture) may help creating a self-managed team.
Get you team involved in the goal setting process
Establishing and setting individual performance goals is not enough. According to surveys by Gallup, only half the employees understand what is expected from them.
And what is even more worrisome: according to the same survey, a large part of managers is also not able to appropriately define what the purpose of their professional performance is!
That is actually a shocking consideration. If a professional is not aware of what they shall attain with their job, they are then only taking up space in the company.
To combat that scenario, you shall include your employees in the goal setting process. If they are aware of their strengths and weaknesses, they will be able to assess their performances and settle intentions and commitments on a regular basis, considering the general business context.
Thus, you increase the odds to jointly establish attainable goals.
Establish attainable goals
“Dream big” is actually not a useful metaphor in professional performance management. Therein, what is most important is practical experience and setting attainable goals.
Although having ambitious goals shall not be considered something bad, they may negatively impact employees morale and commitment.
In order to prevent that, you should apply personalized or specific criteria when setting goals to your team, preventing professionals with different characteristics to always pursue the same individual goals.
Maybe you have certain goals in mind to each team member, however, asking employees to identify goals specifically related to the functions they perform will provide you with educated answers.
There is a big qualitative difference between imposing goals to be met and encouraging employees to offer suggestions.
Examples of individual goals are very common when some managers believe if they behave so, their team will go beyond themselves to attain at least part of the result. Actually, that shall discourage employees.
Talk to your employees about career on a regular basis
Making employees individual goals and your business general context converge is capital for qualifying the productivity of the work performed. As a matter of fact, expectations transparency is one of the most elementary professional requirements, and is also vital for collective results. Take that idea one step further, by placing career discussions.
When assessing and discussing performance goals with an employee, find out if they are happy with their current function, and if they wish to progress in their job. Keeping employees looking to the future will make their efforts more significant.
Appreciate goal achievement
Appreciating goal achievement is a motivation factor that should not be neglected, as reaping the benefits of professional qualification may take quite a substantial amount of time.
A good idea is offering rewards whenever a goal is attained. Those rewards may come as a bonus, pay rise, an additional day off – definitely, possibilities are almost endless. You should at least make time to personally congratulate your team success, either during meetings or in the presence of the whole company or department.
Revisit established goals often
The final goal setting step consists in closely following what you created. Review your goals often. To major goals, once a month may be appropriate. For short-term goals, however, make sure the review is weekly or even daily. Mapping deadlines on a calendar, creating updateable task lists and using logs are excellent ways to be on the right track.
Additionally, constantly reviewing your goals contributes for them to be updated and for the constant motivation of your employees, and also prevents you from skipping important steps in the process. Establishing goals, dedicating time and effort to them, shall bring the reward of awakening all your business potential.
Here are some examples of individual performance goals
Always remember when and how! Note that they are present in each individual goals examples we brought:
- Increase your sales by 20%, by the end of the semester, with the help of the CRM tool.
- Reduce the manufacturing rate of defective parts in your team to 0.5% by applying the PDCA cycle.
- Doubling the monthly publication of articles in our blog, during the last semester of the year, by training the interns team to be hired full time before that period.
Like the article and the examples of individual goals plans provided? Then share this post in your social networks and help other people to establish business goals!