As 2019 comes to an end, now is the perfect time to set goals for the new year. Most workplaces set organizational goals each year, but it’s just as important to be working toward personal goals. Whether you want to advance in your career, further your education, improve communication skills, or live a healthier life, setting a goal is the first step.
What are goals?
Goals are “the object or aim of an action,” according to Positive Psychology. Goal setting is the process by which we achieve these goals.
Experts claim the reasons behind better performance include intentionally set goals and objectives. “The setting of goals has been shown to increase employee motivation and organizational commitment” says Positive Psychology. The more an individual values a goal, the harder they work to achieve it, and in turn, the more success they feel once they reach it.
Why set goals?
Goals help you decide what path to take in life, how to get there, and what distractions to avoid. Goals play a critical role in daily motivation and can help:
- Determine what you want to achieve in life
- Shed light on where to focus time, energy, and resources
- Increase daily motivation
- Spot distractions that can lead you off track
- Boost confidence as you see your ability to achieve goals
How to set goals
The SMART criteria is an excellent process for setting goals:
S – Specific: Be clear in exactly what you want to accomplish and how.
M – Measurable: Think about how you will be able to track progress toward the goal.
A – Achievable: Be honest with yourself and set a goal that is challenging yet doable.
R – Relevant: Ensure this goal aligns with your broader, long-term goals.
T – Time-Bound: Pick a date you plan to achieve your goal by.
The goal setting process
Start by setting broad, lifetime goals, says Mind Tools. Consider the categories these goals may fall into – financial, education, family, artistic, attitude, physical, recreation, public service, etc.
Next, break down your lifetime goals into smaller ones. Create a five-year, one-year, six-month, and one-month plan. Then create a daily to-do list of things you should do every day that contribute toward your lifetime goals.
While organizational goals are critical for the success of your business, there is also benefit associated with your employees working toward personal goals. When employees feel powerful in pursuit of their passions outside the workplace, they are more motivated and committed as a whole.