Setting Achievable Goals For Your Team

How to set achievable goals for your team Whether you’re a large company with different departments and teams, or a small start-up, setting measurable, achievable goals is important – both to keep you and your staff accountable, to meet performance targets and to drive business growth.   Of course, there’s no doubt that setting goals…

How to set achievable goals for your team

Whether you’re a large company with different departments and teams, or a small start-up, setting measurable, achievable goals is important – both to keep you and your staff accountable, to meet performance targets and to drive business growth.
 
Of course, there’s no doubt that setting goals can be tricky – but if you don’t do it, your business may struggle to meet its objectives or gain an edge over its competitors.
 
Setting the right goals for the right team members is also a great way of keeping staff motivated – and help them reach their full potential. Plus, there’s no doubt high-performing employees can be of huge benefit to your business in general. Here’s how to get started with goal-setting.
 

1. Use the SMART goal framework

 
This means creating goals that are Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Time-Bound. Creating a specific, attainable goal gives your team focus (if a goal is wishy-washy or not specific enough, your team may struggle to meet it). Having a way to measure your progress keeps you motivated and moves you forward. Similarly, you want the goal to be aligned with your business objectives, and you want to put a reasonable deadline on it.
 

2. Involve your team in the planning

 
Talk to your employees about the goals you’d like to set and their own professional goals, to see where they might be a good fit or how their skills might help. Write down the goals you want to achieve as a company and as a team – research shows the act of recording the details of the goal – and displaying it prominently somewhere – is strongly associated with successfully meeting it.
 

3. Allocate ownership to the goal

 
You may have all the SMART variables in place when setting a business goal, but you’ll never reach the finish line unless there’s ownership and accountability over the outcome. Ensuring you have enough resources in place, and giving team members roles and ownership over certain objectives being met, is important for keeping everyone on track.
 

4. Break goals into bite-sized chunks

 
Many companies will set large and ambitious goals for their team, and the trick here is to break them up into smaller chunks. For example, perhaps your goal is to bring in four new clients to the business by the end of the year. Or, maybe you have a long-term goal to fix the SEO on your website so you can improve your Google rankings and start to draw in more targeted customers. Start by splitting up the goal into tasks and milestones that can be easily reviewed and tweaked along the way.
 

5. Follow-up and review goals regularly

 
Checking in with your team on where they’re at with their goals is essential – and it’s also a good opportunity for you to offer advice, encouragement or assistance if they’re struggling with any of the tasks or not progressing as well as you’d hoped. Being flexible about goals and assessing if they need to be changed or re-nosed in some way is also key to success.
 

6. Consider offering incentives

 
Incentive plans that are aligned with the strategic goals of your business and involve rewarding employees for individual performance or great teamwork, can be effective. While the types of incentives will differ depending on your company and the goals you set, you might want to include a competition to win a trip, or a bonus in the paycheck of every team member if they collectively meet a weekly or monthly goal, for example.
 

7. Celebrate your wins

 
Celebrating the successful completion of a goal you and your team have worked on for weeks or months is essential. It gives your employees recognition for their hard work and helps them feel appreciated, which leads to employee satisfaction. But that’s not all. Gallup researchers found that praising employees can lead to more productive and engaged team members – and they’re more likely to stick around, too.
 

Conclusion

 
Setting achievable goals is essential for any business – big or small – and there’s no doubt it can help you meet your objectives and keep your team motivated and accountable.
 
We hope these suggestions help you in your strategic management and goal-setting going forward. Taking steps to set regular goals, especially after you’ve met previous ones, is a great way to keep the momentum going for your team, and to track how much you’ve achieved, too.
 
Want more? Check out our latest blog posts or download our Guides.