Business & Economy

Monday, 12 January 2009 20:44

How to set good goals in 2009

{pp}Dianne Volek, CEO of InterComm and creator of the Intercommerce Portal explains how to set practical objectives that will take your business forward.
It's the start of a new year, and many people are making resolutions and setting strategy for the tough year ahead. Dianne Volek, CEO of InterComm and creator of the Intercommerce Portal ( help you set practical objectives that will take your business forward.

In business or project management, one of the most effective ways to formulate a good goal or objective is to use the acronym SMART. SMART stands for:

Is the description of the objective is precise? An effective objective is very specific and easy to understand. Goals such as "improve quality" or "increase profit" are too vague. Rather use specific language, such as "reduce the number of rejected product to 3% of production before end of March" or "increase average profit on all jobs by 5% before middle of the year."

If you can't easily measure it, how do you track your progress towards your objective? Decide how you are going to measure results - and then set up the performance measurement process. Measurement is one reason why you use very specific terms, like "5% profit". This helps spur you on towards your goal.

In a team-building environment, people often make BIG promises in front of the audience. They enjoy the admiring looks and approval of management. But in the cold light of a working day, those far-reaching objectives may be unachieveable, leading to demotivation and stress. However, the objective MUST require some effort; it need to spur one to action, not result in complacency.. A proper goal should stretch you slightly so that you need to be committed.

Ask yourself: do you have the power to control the performance or completion of the objective? You need to feel that you can reach your goals, and that you have an influence on them. Having a goal like "co-workers to be nicer to clients" is, fundamentally, out of your control, even if you are the boss. A better goal would be "run monthly workshops for employees that focus on client service."

A concrete goal has a deadline. It may be as limited as the end of next week, or as long as the end of 2009. Deadlines help you manage your time towards achieving goals. Without a deadline, the goal will appear to be unimportant and never happen. Set a realistic deadline, with a suitable time frame.

Limit yourself to just a handful of short-term and medium-term goals. Writing an exhaustive list of everything you would like to complete before you leave this earth is a sure way to de-motivate yourself.

Set some goals today, and look forward to a more productive 2009!

InterComm South Africa
Effective dynamic, graphic & e-commerce websites
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Tel: 011 454-2234

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