This assignment deals with the discussion about setting SMART goals. The issue this task highlights is that there are many people who set goals, but not everyone is able to achieve those goals. There are various reasons which make it difficult for people to achieve their goals. There are hurdles which everyone needs to overcome to ensure that they can achieve their own goals. This is true for everyone’s personal and professional goals.
In general, if a person wants to set goals which he or she can actually achieve, the person needs to follow the format of setting SMART goals. SMART goals are specific, measurable, achievable, and realistic and time-bound. The details of these goals along with the examples which help in understanding all these characteristics or elements are discussed in this assignment.
Setting goals for one’s own life as a manager or leader or as a common person, and not being able to achieve them can only be considered as a futile effort. Everyone agrees on this point. However, there is a very clear trend to be noticed about the outcomes of setting goals. There are many people who fail at achieving their targets and goals. There are others who can achieve their goals. The difference between these two types of people is about goal setting in particular ways and to use appropriate methods to achieve those goals.
Everyone sets goals in personal and professional lives. However, it is likely that many of us have experiences of setting goals but we failed to achieve them for reasons. When it comes to failure at achieving certain goals set by a person, there are reasons which lead to this failure. It is very important that the reasons for the failure, in this case, are identified properly by the person who wants to achieve his or her goals. The reason might be that the goal is not properly connected to a specific time, which leads to a situation where it is not possible to achieve the goal in the time frame where it can be considered useful.
There are other reasons for failure at achieving goals too. The goal might have no measure, so, the person cannot estimate his progress towards his goal or for other various reasons. The first step is to know why one is unable to achieve his or her goals and the second step would be to set goals through the use of a smart method. Use of methods which are appropriate can lead to a situation where people can set achievable goals and can actually achieve those goals too.
An important point to discuss here is that how to set goals. If goals are set in a proper manner, they can be achieved in a proper way too. One of the most common ways to set goals is to set SMART Goals. It should be considered in detail as a valid point that not every idea or intention of a future act is a real objective, but the objective must have certain characteristics and that makes it a real target.
According to the SMART model, each goal that a person sets in his or her personal or professional life must meet the SMART criteria. The elements important to the SMART criteria include the following:
· The goal needs to be SPECIFIC
· It should be MEASURABLE
· It should be ACHIEVABLE
· The goal must be REALESTIC or RELEVANT
· Also, it needs to be TIME BOUND ( )
It is important to note here that these five characteristics or elements in setting the goals are vital to be there in both personal and professional goal setting. In the following paragraphs, I will explain these elements in detail, with examples.
Firstly, the goal needs to be specific. The clarity of the goal is an important feature of the goals, and it is not enough to be clear only, but also must be defined and described (Sheilds et al, 2015). For example, as a team leader in my performance management course, I might come across situations where I have to achieve my target scores. In case of team projects, I might need to lead my group. In any such cases, the goals we need to achieve, and the roles and responsibilities of each member need to be clarified and specific. In case of a group project, the specific goal would be the score or grade which we are targeting.
Secondly, the objective needs to be measurable. Measurable objectives are objectives that can be measured and evaluated in a practical way so that an implementation plan can be developed in carefully calculated stages and monitor progress and achievement. There is a difference between measurable and non-measurable objective (David, 2016). For example, a service seller can have a measurable goal of making 15 new sales every month. Making a lot of sales can be considered as non-measurable, while putting a certain figure makes it measurable.
Thirdly, the goal must be achievable. In setting goals, we must identify ways and means to achieve them in the light of our available resources and capabilities, with wise planning for their implementation (Landers et al, 2015). If I set a goal that I want to live in space in another 5 years, this will be a goal which is not achievable. The achievable goal would be that I want to relocate to another state in the USA in next five years. In addition, if my goal is to open a wine company in Saudi Arabia, it will be a non-achievable goal because Alcohol is forbidden in that country.
In a continuity of the achievable concept, the goal needs to be realistic as well (David, 2016). A realistic goal would be that I want to achieve my master`s degree in next one year. An unrealistic goal would be that I want to get hold of a PhD degree in next three months.
Finally, the goal needs to be time-bound as well. It means that you set a time to start and finish the work on the goal. Actually, it helps you to notice the time that your projects need, so, you will realize the value of the time. Then, you will never enter anything on your agenda except the important things and projects. The sales mentioned in the previous example, for example, have to be made in one month. The same number of sales can be made in a year, but then it will not be anything profitable.
In general, it can be said that to achieve goals in personal or professional life, it is important that goals are set in a SMART way. In personal life, when you say to yourself, “I will lighten my weight,” this is not a SMART goal. While when you say “My goal is to keep doing sport to reduce my weight by 15 kilos before the end of the next two months” This is a SMART goal which is containing all the previous five elements.