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Goal Setting For Employees: 5 Useful Tips

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I wouldn't be wrong if I say that goal setting for employees is highly integral to business development.

According to Wikipedia:

Goal setting involves developing an action plan designed to motivate and guide a person or group toward a goal.

Generally, planning and setting performance goals top many a companies priority lists.

As a manager, it's vital that you set specific goals for your team. Or personal goals that employees need to achieve.

When employees have specific goals to strive towards, it positively impacts their employee performance as well.

Also, when team members collaborate to reach goals, it revolutionizes how a company strives to achieve its business goals.

5 Ways To Facilitate Better Goal Setting For Employees

1. Set and achieve SMART goals

Setting goals without prior planning are of no use. That's why today's organizations invest in the concept of SMART goal setting.

The concept of SMART goals is easy. SMART is an acronym that stands for:

Specific Goals

Goal setting should be specific, clear, and straightforward. Vaguely stated goals work only to confuse employees of the goal's purpose.

Unspecific goals will only make employees feel confused about what they are supposed to do to achieve that particular goal.

Thus as a manager, ask yourself 4 questions before setting a goal for your employees:

  • What do I want a particular employee to accomplish?
  • Why achieving this goal is important?
  • Who is going to work on this goal?
  • Which resources will it involve in achieving this goal?

Measurable Goals

SMART goals ideally should be "trackable" so that employees can keep track of their goals and stay motivated.

Thus, setting specific, measurable goals highlights the efforts required to accomplish them.

Achievable Goals

Setting unattainable goals will only result in demotivation among employees.

An achievable goal should set the bar:

  • High enough that it becomes just challenging enough to strive for it.
  • Subsequently, low enough that it is still feasible with the present resources and amount of time available.

Relevant Goals

Great SMART goals place consideration into its relevance regarding:

  • Conditions required for the completion of the goal.
  • Unforeseeable circumstances may hamper the completion of the goals.
  • In addition to the other urgent goals that may come in the way of completing a particular goal.
  • Also, unavailability of necessary resources.

Time-bound Goals

Time-bound SMART goals allocate a specific amount of time. It assigns a finishing deadline for every plan. This ensures that everyday tasks don't come in between the priority to achieve goals.

2. Strike a balance between employee goals and business goals.

Every individual goal should work in some way to fulfill team goals or business goals.

The main criteria in goal setting for employees are aligning business goals with personal ones.

Thus, to magnify goal-setting results for employees, every goal should balance employee goals and business goals.

It's also important that employees get the chance to set goals for themselves. Consequently, when employees get a chance to set their own goals, they are more likely to stay committed. This, in turn, makes employees more likely to achieve that goal.

3. Collaboration To Set Stronger Employee Goals

A 2013 Forbes article cited a study that suggested that collaborating on goals with your peers boosts your chances of achieving them.

This study revealed that people who shared their goals with their peers had a 75% more chance of succeeding than those who worked solo.

Collaborating helps to see different views and approaches to reach a performance goal. Also, it provides a boost of confidence to know that someone is there to help you out.

Here are a few ways to make goal setting for employees into a collaborative task:

  • Sometimes individual goals might cause to hamper the progress of the team goals. Give the team members access to all the goals that individuals are working on. Transparency is the key here.
  • Also, always seek to divide the bigger goals among team members. Giving a single employee the sole responsibility of reaching that goal is taking a big risk.
  • Furthermore, the use of project management tools makes setting and reaching a goal feel like a walk to the park. Skype, Trello, Slack are some collaborative tools that have been a big hit with today's corporates.

4. Recognition on achieving performance goals

When done correctly- i.e., frequently and timely- recognition is an amazing tool. It helps show people how their efforts have helped to reach strategic business goals.

Research shows that engaged employees are more likely to continue performing at a higher level than unengaged employees.

Appreciating employees upon reaching performance goals is a powerful way to build a culture of recognition and amplify overall employee performance.

However, many companies choose ineffective recognition methods that provide little or inadequate benefits. In such cases, having a corporate reward and recognition program works wonders to providing timely, frequent, and value-based appreciation.

5. Align goal setting with a performance management system

A performance management system is a vital tool capable of tracking the fulfillment of employee goals.

Regardless of the employee's role or department, a performance management system ensures that they have achieved the performance goals they were allocated.

About 91% of companies with effective performance management systems say that employees' goals are tied to the broader business priorities.

Every employee, at every level, should be able to clearly see how their efforts will help achieve business success.

Thus for this to work, every major business priority needs to be transformed into clear goals. It will help you prioritize tasks and measure the outcome of your business strategy.

Mainly, your performance management practices need to ensure that the team goals are communicated well to employees when setting their personal goals.

Recommended Read: Epic Goal Setting Quotes For A Successful Year

In Conclusion

Do you have any more tips to make goal setting for your employees more effective? If yes, then do drop us an email. We'd love to include your suggestions on this list.

This article is written by Barasha Medhi who is a part of the marketing team at Vantage Circle. Barasha can be found either searching for interesting HR, company culture, and corporate buzzwords to write about or looking at pictures of cozy Bel Air mansions. For any related queries, contact editor@vantagecircle.com.

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