Having your team's set goals at work is an important yet interesting balancing act for each of them to perform. On one hand, the goals they set need to fall in line with your company mission. On the other hand, they must also be their own. Otherwise, goal-setting is just a way of conditioning, a check-the-box exercise which is fruitless for you both.
An additional complication is that some company procedures are better at helping your employees set and achieve work goals than others. The good news is that even if your current process is to carry out annual goal-setting session/ performance reviews as a necessity, there are things you can do to get some added value out of it. If you genuinely understand the power of goal alignment and setting and achieving goals, you have a great opportunity to use the conversation as a starting point for career growth.
First off think SMART
Goals help you to provide a sense of direction, motivation, a clear focus, and clarify importance to your employees. Help your teams to find the right targets to aim for. A SMART target is used to help guide goal setting.
SMART is an acronym that stands for:
- S Specific (Significant)
- M Measurable (Meaningful)
- A Attainable (Action-Oriented)
- R Relevant (Rewarding)
- T Time-bound (Trackable)
Therefore, a SMART goal incorporates all of these criteria to help focus everyone’s efforts and increase the chances of achieving that goal.
Have your teams perform a SWOT
The ability to objectively assess themselves is something that will give your team a powerful competitive advantage in their careers. Successful professionals will continually self-evaluate, whether the subject is their career, their professional development or their progress in relation to life plans and objectives.
Having your team’s complete a frank SWOT analysis is an effective tool for helping your teams to evaluate their skills or marketability so that they can take practical steps to improve both.
A SWOT analysis is a strategic planning technique used to help a person or organisation identify strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats related to business competition or project planning. This exercise can be as useful to a Board director facing a new challenge in their career as it can to an apprentice starting at their job.
Personal Development Plan
A personal development plan helps them to structure their thinking by asking them to constantly plan and think ahead. It is a process that consists of defining what is important to them, what they want to achieve, what strengths they already have that help them to achieve their goals, and what help they need to improve and develop given the right time and support by you.
Providing your employees with these career-shaping tools will help them better understand where they want to be within your business and the support and goals they need in order to achieve this. They will also be more productive with a clear focus on the targets ahead, which will benefit them, their team and the company as a whole. Show your team the right way and you will have a loyal long term thinking team member, driven to reach their goals.