Friday, September 18, 2015


SMART Goals are specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and time-bound.  It is much more likely that you achieve your goal if you make it a SMART Goal ("I will lose 15 pounds by May 31 by eating fewer fats and desserts, more fruits and veggies, walking briskly for 45 minutes 3 times a week, and weighing myself weekly") as opposed to what I call a New Year's Resolution ("I will lose weight this year").
  • Specific - Consider the difference between, "We want to sell more contracts than have ever been sold within this company," and "Our goal is to sell 20,000 units by March 15." Specific goals paint a much clearer picture for people and let them know exactly how they are doing in achieving them.
  • Measurable - Most goals should be quantifiable and measurable. If not, they are probably wishful thinking rather than a goal and not likely to be attained.
  • Achievable - Although challenging, goals must not discourage team members who may conclude that they are impossible or too difficult to attain. Goals need to cause people to stretch but be perceived as "doable."
  • Realistic - Goals should be realistic and within reach.  Team members must believe that the goal can be accomplished and be willing to commit to the goal.
  • Time-Bound - A goal should also have a timeframe for its completion.  This will vary depending upon the nature of the goal. However, without a timeframe, there is not pressure to compel people towards its accomplishment.
Until next time...

Sheryl Tuchman, SPHR, SHRM-SCP

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