Setting Goals are a vital part of any strategy, so it’s important you put some thought into what strategic goals are placed across the company. What are the goals that ultimately support your major Strategic Objectives?
There’s a lot of research over the best approach to Goal setting in order to produce great results for the company and the individual employees. Locke’s Goal Setting Theory identifies five elements that need to be in place to ensure we’re supported to best achieve the goals set…
Locke’s Goal Setting Theory is the link between five clear principles of Goals and the performance against that Goal. Locke’s work, and the subsequent research that was built on it, showed a better result for companies and employees if Goals adhered to the following five rules:
Goals must be clear and specific for all
Goals should be challenging enough to be motivating without being unrealistic
All employees must be committed to the Goal happening
Feedback on the Goals should be considered
Goals must be achievable and not overwhelming
It’s important a Goal is clear so you everyone knows what it is, how it’s measured and when it’s achieved. If you’re vague in your Goal, then it’ll be difficult to agree when the Goal is achieved and won't be motivating for anyone…
There are some principles you can follow to ensure clear Goals:
Make sure Goals are both achievable but challenging. It will add to motivation and create that good feeling when you hit the Goals you’ve set! Consider the following to help you get to the point of a challenging Goal:
This is so important, as if you don’t have commitment you’re highly likely to not hit your potential and achieve your Goals. The whole team need to be included and onboard with the Goal, so there are some key principles to consider:
This principle touches on the Commitment and Challenging principles of Goal creation, in that you need to listen to feedback and plan your Goals accordingly. This will give you valuable insight into the current wellbeing of your team, their take on the future success, and it’ll make them feel included. Consider the following:
Employee mental health and wellbeing is so important, and overwhelming Goals will only reduce your ultimate performance. Take care to consider your team and their handling of different Goals to get the best outcome for all. Consider the following:
There are a number of proven advantages of this approach:
There are some areas to consider when using this framework:
Edwin A. Locke is the Locke in Locke’s Goal Setting, he published a paper called Toward a Theory of Task Motivation and Incentive in 1968 and followed it up with decades of work and research in this area.
His work was complemented when Dr. Gary Latham began researching practical implementations of the theory Locke had produced.
In the early 1990s, Locke and Latham came together to publish A Theory of Goal Setting & Task Performance, a book that expanded the theory.
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