SMART Goal Setting


SMART GOALS

Blackboard with the SMART Goal definition written on it

Once you have planned your project, turn your attention to developing several goals that will enable you to be successful. Goals should be SMART – specific, measurable, agreed upon, realistic and time-based.

A goal might be to hold a weekly project meeting with the key members of your team or to organise and run a continuous test programme throughout the project.

The acronym SMART has several slightly different variations, which can be used to provide a more comprehensive definition of goal setting:

S – specific, significant, stretching

M – measurable, meaningful, motivational

A – agreed upon, attainable, achievable, acceptable, action-oriented

R – realistic, relevant, reasonable, rewarding, results-oriented

T – time-based, time-bound, timely, tangible, trackable

This broader definition will help you to be successful in both your business and personal life.

When you next run a project take a moment to consider whether your goals are SMART goals.

To quote renowned American philosopher and writer Elbert Hubbard:

Many people fail in life, not for lack of ability or brains or even courage, but simply because they have never organised their energies around a goal.Elbert Hubbard

SMART Goals

Specific

  • Well defined
  • Clear to anyone that has a basic knowledge of the project

Measurable

  • Know if the goal is obtainable and how far away completion is
  • Find out when you have achieved your goal

Agreed Upon

  • Agreement with all the stakeholders what the goals should be

Realistic

  • Within the availability of resources, knowledge and time

Time-Based

  • Enough time to achieve the goal
  • Not too much time, which can affect project performance

~ By Duncan Haughey

Robert Ritch

Robert is an expert in marketing and finance. He has developed these skills over a 25-year career specializing in business turnarounds.

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