Set Smart Goals to Achieve Anything

Have you ever tried to lose weight? How about exercise more or finish that best-selling business book that is going to change your world? Does your organization have hurdles it needs to overcome, but you are not making any traction? The first step in achieving any objective is to set clear, measureable goals.

SMART goals are a great launch point for achieving anything. SMART goals are:

Specific – Paints a clear picture of what you want to achieve.
Measureable – Quantitative.
Attainable – Not idealistic, but something you can actually do with a little elbow grease.
Relevant – Meets a specific challenge and/or is central to your personal values or organizational goals.
Time-bound – Has a deadline.

Setting SMART goals takes some practice so here are two examples to help you think through how to make your goals SMART:

Example 1:

Before – I want to improve my presentation skills because I have to make an important presentation to the Board of Directors.

After – By November 1, I will identify 2-3 of my coworkers that are good presenters and conduct a trial run of my presentation to get their feedback, which I will incorporate before my Board meeting on November 30.

Example 2:

Before – We need to increase member engagement.

After – By November 1, I will conduct a survey of disengaged members to determine why they are not participating in the organization’s products and services. Based on the results of the survey, I will work with the Membership Committee to determine three ways to add/articulate value to engage these members and implement by December 31. The initiatives will be monitored over the course of three months and then the level of engagement of the target members will be reevaluated.