We’re about 10% through 2021 already. How do those SMART goals look at this point?
Are you 10% of the way toward reaching them? Are they end-states you’re trying to achieve, or are there some intermediate steps along the way?
The infamous Big Hairy Audacious Goals envisioned in Jim Collins’ “Good to Great” might be useful in causing an organization to stretch. However, goals often remain on the horizon longer than they should because they are destinations without a map to get there.
Setting Your Strategic Goals
Some companies establish strategic goals and then drive toward them by incorporating an operating plan and individual performance plans. Tiered implementation is a tried-and-true method of breaking big goals into smaller attainable goals.
Let’s assume that all of your goals are also relevant and timebound, making them truly SMART. However, you can do even more.
Is the team inspired to reach the established goals? Have you considered leveling-up? At the suggestion of my colleague and marketing guru, Lisa Larter, I recently read Chip & Dan Heath’s best-selling book, The Power of Moments. The authors describe how working with more intention in our lives may allow us to live more of the “good stuff.” The authors invoke one concept, Steve Kamb’s strategy of ‘leveling-up’—taking the small steps right in front of you.
Level-Up Your Goals
Think of Candy Crush or any progression through levels of expertise. The Power of Moments’ adaptation encourages the reader to place meaningful milestones to mark progress toward goals intentionally. So, we aren’t just interested in measuring accomplishment; we can more fully experience the intermediate achievement if we set them correctly.Before we get too far into this new year, evaluate your strategic goals and implementation plan for the vital human ingredients. Learn how to level-up your SMART goals in 2021, here: Click To Tweet
Be careful that this doesn’t take the form of a stale employee-of-the-week sort of recognition moment. The intermediate wins and accomplishments should have some emotional element to have meaning and be memorable. These emotional moments along the way, it turns out, also serve your retention goals.
The Importance of Meaningful Goals
Consider the example of running marathons, 26.2 miles. Many complete their first marathon for someone else; the second one and beyond is for them. The emotions and adrenaline levels in each are different. The same may be true for some of your recurring goals.
Most marathon training programs incorporate intentional periods of building endurance, improving speed, and rest. Along the way, the runner participates in several shorter races, e.g., 5k, 10k, etc. Additionally, there are a few long runs, perhaps 18-20 miles, but never a full marathon before the actual marathon race. At each of these intermediate level races or intentional long runs, the marathon trainee achieves the satisfaction, personal feedback, and feelings of accomplishment that accompany success at each level.
Before we get too far into this new year, evaluate your strategic goals and implementation plan for the vital human ingredients. Are there intentional points of inspiration along the way? Is there an emotional attachment to the goals?
The good news is, you have time to adjust—if you do it now. What’s a strategic goal you have for 2021? Let me know in a comment below.
Need help engaging with the federal government for a policy or funding your product? Schedule a call with Gene.
To get a copy of Pitching the Big Top: How to Master the 3-Ring Circus of Federal Sales, or information on federal sales, visit Capitol Integration.