Let's Talk SMART Goals
What Are Smart Goals?
Throughout this article we will be discussing Smart Goals, what they are and how we can and do, use them in our lives and why we should use them. So let’s talk about smart goals.
Believe it or not, we all use smart goals throughout our lives.
Whether we are aware of it or not!
Every one of us has achieved milestones in our lives.
Everytime you have achieved a milestone, it is most likely you have used the principles of smart goals!
It could be graduating from school or university; it could be landing your dream job; or it could be when you are selected in a representative squad.
If you have achieved, then you have used the principles of Smart Goals!
Smart goals need to be
- Clear and concise
- Keep you committed
Each time you reach a milestone, each time you achieve a certain status, you become better at setting the next goal. And that improves your chances of achieving it.
Can you see how this works?
What Exactly Is A S.M.A.R.T. Goal?
Let’s start with the acronym and what the letters mean
Smart goals can be used to achieve anything you want in all areas of your life.
It makes achieving goals in life, in business, in sport, in work, very powerful.
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All successful people have a goal. No one can get anywhere unless he knows where he wants to go and what he wants to be or do.
I learned a lot about these in my corporate life as my performance was measured by achieving KPI’s (Key Performance Indicators) and I could only achieve them by setting SMART goals.
I was leading a team and their performance was also measured by KPI’s so they needed to set SMART goals to achieve them.
My performance was measured by taking into account the performance of my team. So all of our results were the culmination of successfully reaching our SMART goals.
This is a somewhat complicated but you can see how this all comes together once you have a clear understanding of how to set goals the SMART way.
I want to give you the rundown on how to do this for yourself so you can go away and smash the SMART goals you set.
Think of it like a roadmap to get you there!
Here we go….
Decide what your goal is – it could be
- writing a book instead of a blog
- a 10k run instead of a 2k run
- your own business instead of a job
- to have your first 500 subscribers
- to have your first 10 paying clients
This list is endless but you get the idea.
Why Are Smart Goals So Important?
There are goals and then there are S.M.A.R.T. goals. The difference between them is miles apart.
Smart goals give us clarity around whether we are heading in the right direction to achieve them.
Ordinary goals are simply statements that have very little substance. A quick example might be…
“I want to earn more money” – Ordinary Goal
Now a smart goal is a very short (or long!) story, something like this…
“As of today, the 1st June (year),by the end of this year, I want to earn more money, an extra $10K p.a., through either a promotion or new job opportunity that will improve my current financial position” – Smart Goal
Let’s break this statement down a little to see if it has all the components of a SMART goal.
✔ SPECIFIC – there is a timeframe, there is a definite $ amount, there are options to reaching this, and an outcome explained.
✔ MEASURABLE – there is a timeframe, there is a definite $ amount, there are options to reaching this, and an outcome explained.
✔ ACHIEVABLE –there is a timeframe, there is a definite $ amount, there are options to reaching this, and an outcome explained.
✔ REALISTIC –there is a timeframe, there is a definite $ amount, there are options to reaching this, and an outcome explained.
✔ TIMELY -there is a timeframe, there is a definite $ amount, there are options to reaching this, and an outcome explained.
I want to point out here how important the date of setting the goal plays in the outcome.
Let’s say the goal statement above was written on 1st November (year) and not 1st June, then it is still possible, however not highly likely to be achieved.
It may not meet
So it is evident that SMART goals rely on all 5 components of being
If you want to be happy, set a goal that commands your thoughts, liberates your energy and inspires your hopes.
Below are some questions that will help you to write your SMART Goal Statements.
Let’s get started…
- What do you want to achieve?
- Who needs to be involved?
- When do you want to do this?
- Why is this a goal?
- How are you going to measure your progress?
- How much focus is needed?
- How many deadlines are required?
- How will you know when you reach your goal?
- Do you have the skills for this goal?
- If not, can you learn them?
- What is your motivation for this goal?
- Can you remain focused to achieve this goal?
- Is this worth the effort?
- Does it agree with other objectives?
- Is the timing right?
- Am I the right person to complete the goal?
- When will you achieve this?
- Is the timing realistic?
- What can I do today that will help to achieve this?
- What strategy will assist on-time achievement?
Now you can craft a SMART goal statement based on your answers to the above questions.
Go and achieve your goals….