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Successful Employee Goal Setting with 5 Worthy Tips

Avatar of Autonomous Autonomous | Mar 14, 2021
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How often are goals set? How often should you revisit the new year resolution list you create? While setting employees’ goals and objectives is no less common than an ergonomic office chair in organizations, it can be just as difficult as executing them. As an employee, you should set goals that are in alignment with the company’s business, and they should be geared towards your personal development too. This can aid in your professional growth and development as it contributes positively to employee motivation and performance. 

Employee goal setting is an important responsibility of all managers, and by orchestrating measurable and attainable goals, a supervisor can guide improvements in the performance and productivity of the said employees. At the same time, it can strengthen the organization and its reputation. 

Benefits of Goal Setting

Benefits of Goal Setting

Whether the goals are personal or directly linked to the organization, they can cause change and allow you to grow in many ways, one of which is being a more productive person. Some of the benefits are as follows:

  • Setting performance goals helps you to prioritize and stay focused. They allow you to identify the more important and pressing matters, directing your focus and time to specific ideas or tasks. Once the goals are prioritized, instead of spreading your attention across everything and not getting much work done, you can target where it counts. 
  • Setting goals for employees keeps you responsible and helps you make better choices. You are accountable for the things you set out to accomplish instead of leaving it up to another person. When you understand the importance of your goals and what you want to achieve, you are better able to make decisions surrounding what you are pursuing. 
  • Goals can maximize the use of resources available. Without goals, you are more likely to waste resources such as money, time, and manpower. However, if goals are in place there is direction, and resources are used wisely and effectively. 
  • Having goals can help you to understand what needs to be done. 
  • They improve communication. Setting goals for employees helps the communication between employees to flow better, as you and your employee have an understanding and are working toward the organization’s strategic objectives. If you are working from home, you should use some communication essentials to make your interaction with colleagues better.
  • They improve positivity. Most times, employees lack confidence as they do not know or understand what is expected from them and what needs to be done. As such, they spend more time failing, complaining, blaming, and coming up with excuses. Setting performance goals helps you to focus on what you have, expect to have, can have, and not what you do not.
  • Goals help to align staff’s work with the short-term and long-term goals of the organization. Additionally, they cement employee engagement and dictate guidelines for compensation packages. 
  • Accountability and measurement are key factors when goals are set because as time goes by, you are aware of your progress and what other details need work. If you are the type of employee who likes to visually display your goals at your office standing desk or use small office accessories, such as post-its, it gives others a chance to hold you accountable too. 

Tips and Considerations for Successful Employee Goal Setting

A managers’ job includes offering supporting independence at the employee's current level of functioning. Being the manager requires you to enforce this independence by assisting employee goal setting and succeeding while guiding from a distance. Below are five tips in successful employee goal setting:

Tip 1: Ensure That Employee Goals Are Linked to the Organization’s Goals

Employees feel better once they know they are a part of something bigger than them. So, tying and setting performance goals to reflect the bigger picture that the organization has can only make them enjoy feeling like the work they are doing is contributing to the ambitions of the organization. 

This feeling of involvement and being engaged often motivates employees to work smarter, more efficiently, and harder. It helps to improve employees’ productivity Since their efforts are not being wasted, they cheer for the organization’s success. 

Ensure That Employee Goals Are Linked to the Organization’s Goals.

Tip 2: Test and Challenge Your Employees

With improper planning, goals can be destructive to an organization, which reflects on the product. You want to set goals that are challenging yet attainable, after which you have discussions with the employees and negotiate on the goals that are set out to be achieved. So, how to set goals for employees efficiently? Always remember to make your goals SMART:

  • S - specific
  • M - measurable
  • A - attainable/ achievable 
  • R - relevant 
  • T - time-based

After the discussion, both managers and employees agree on an ideal robust limit, which is known as a big goal. This type of goal causes motivation and momentum to build between employees as they all thrive to success. 

Test and Challenge Your Employees.

Tip 3: Detail Ways in Which You Plan to Achieve the Goals That Are Set

Sit down with your team, set clear goals, and brainstorm the best ways to execute the goals. As a manager, you can help to outline and divide the goals into smaller milestones that are manageable and rational. Then, you can create a timeline for each milestone.

Ensure the necessary resources and personnel are available to provide specialized assistance. Office materials like office furniture should also consistently be available to help them along the journey. 

Tip 4: Check-in on the Progress Occasionally

Employees must understand that working as a team is a partnership and they need to understand why and how to set goals for employees. Maintaining team energy and spirit can aid in the interactions and checking of progress. Once each milestone is achieved, the team must come together for a progress report and update. 

Having regular progress reports and meetings helps in identifying the possible errors or areas for improvement necessary to avoid problems and hiccups that can slow down the timeline and goal achievement at large. The reports can occur in the form of emails, meetings, and written documents. 

Check-in on the Progress Occasionally

Tip 5: Recognize Individual Employee Goals

Each employee has personal desires and goals that stretch beyond the scope of the organization. For example, you have an employee whose goal is to teach, and the person has the skill set to do so. As a manager, it is your duty to foster the environment that makes it possible to accomplish this goal by either designating that individual to train others or sending the person to leadership or supervisor training to develop the innate abilities. You also need to know the work motivation rule to more understand and encourage your employees.

What this does is to give the employee a sense of appreciation and belonging which only motivates him/her in other duties because of your acknowledgment.

Recognize Individual Employee Goals

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