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Setting a smart goal can be paramount to succeeding, but only if done in the right way. A common model for setting goals is the SMART model. This model aims to set a goal that is; specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and time-based. This article describes 5 steps, that should be part of any goal setting process. We have chosen to track the goals using key performance indicators (KPIs). This is because KPIs show a very clear indication of how the company is working towards the goal. This gives a baseline of how to talk about the subject and increases motivation.

Setting A shared goal

The first thing you will want to do is to find out what you actually want to achieve in your company.
 
Many companies have a shared goal, which is usually set by corporate. Although, this does not make a difference in the everyday workers’ life. This is why your goal has to be adjustable to each department in your company. This is what we call differentiated goals.
 
If the shared goal is to increase revenue, that might not be relevant for the worker in production. For example, aiming to produce 5% more a week will work towards the shared goal, and also be more relevant and achievable for production workers.

 

The marketing department may not relate to production goals, as they cannot make a difference towards reaching the goal. This is why making a goal for marketing, for example, to increase sales by 5% is much more relevant. This, in turn, works with the shared goal of increased revenue and the increased production. By having a system of differentiated goals you make it transparent. Each group and person knows what they can do towards reaching the bigger goals for the organization.

 

Choosing KPIs

You will have prepared a lot after setting your strategic goal, but you are not finished.
 
One of the keys to success is to keep an eye on progress – like keeping updated on your KPIs – and relating that to what you know is happening in your company. You might need to adjust some things or even your goal. Although you will want to adjust your actions to keep up with the goal, you need to trust the goal and not reevaluate it at any given time. Goals are set at the beginning and evaluated at the end. These are the only two times you can question the goal. 

 

Evaluation 

At the end of the time you have set for your goal, you will need to do some reflection on how you have done on reaching your goal.
 
If you manage to succeed in reaching your goal, you need to ask yourself and each other in the department; “Why did we succeed? What did we do that worked? How could we do better? How do we keep doing this? And what is the next step?”.
 
If you fail to reach your goal, you need to ask yourself and each other; “Why did we fail? What did we do that worked? How could we do better? Do we want to keep improving this, with adjusted strategy or goal?”.
 
One way to make every understand each others perspectives is through visualization. This could be a graph, a bar or a gauge of the numbers. It could also be a drawing or illustration of how each persons sees the current situation, or the organization.
 
After all; running an organization is not something that ever finishes, but an iterative circle. You have to keep improving and learning.

 

We hope your work with KPIs and strategic goal will benefit your organization. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us on contact@cobraid.dk or write a comment below.

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