Make Your Strategic Short-Term Goals SMART

Realistic goals ought to serve as a tool for stretching a company and its strategic plan to reach its full potential; this means setting goals high enough to be challenging to energize the company and its strategy. Short-term goals are immediate mileposts on your way to your vision. Think about achieving them in a one-year time frame. With goals, the company converts the mission, vision, and long-term strategic objectives into performance targets.

For effective goals to track a company’s performance and progress, they must state specifics: how much of what kind of performance and by when it’s to be accomplished. The goals must be relevant and aggressive yet achievable, and they must be stated in measurable or quantifiable terms. Think SMART when you create your goals:

  • Specific: Goals need to be specific. Try to answer how much and what kind with each goal you write.

  • Measurable: Goals must be stated in quantifiable terms, or otherwise they’re only good intentions. Measurable goals facilitate management planning, implementation, and control.

  • Attainable: Goals must provide a stretch that inspires people to aim higher. Goals must be achievable, or they’re a setup for failure. Set goals you know you, your company, and your employees can realistically reach.

  • Responsible person: Goals must be assigned to a person or a department. But just because a person is assigned to a goal doesn’t mean that she’s solely responsible for its achievement.

  • Time specific: Your goals must include a timeline of when they should be accomplished.

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