How to set goals as a leader

Whether we like it or not goals help us and others to get stuff done.  The business world knows this and is getting on with it, but the Christian world is struggling.  I believe there are two main reasons for this.  The first is a proper reluctance to take responsibility for things that God alone is truly responsible for.  Of course we need to understand our place, however there is still a lot that God has given us stewardship over and setting goals in these areas is very useful.  Second, we have experienced goals used badly and have wrongly concluded that all such targets are bad.

A few years ago I cam across some helpful pointers from Marcus Buckingham when it comes to goals:

  • Effective goal-setting drives high performance
  • Too many goals = no goals at all
  • Goals should set the outcome, not manage the process
  • Goals should be SMART
  • Set appropriate intervals for the team
  • Team goals should be aligned to the organisational goals
  • Create goals that play to the strengths of the individual

For those who haven’t come across it before, SMART goals are ones that are:

  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Achievable
  • Relevant
  • Time-bound

There are actually quite a few different versions of the above, see the Wikipedia page for more details.

As a leader, do you need to review how you set goals?  Perhaps you need start experimenting with doing things in a different way.

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