Do you feel like you are rushing through tasks and not really accomplishing much? Do you set goals but feel overwhelmed when it comes to making that first step? Setting SMART goals means you can clarify your ideas, focus your efforts, use your resources productively, and increase your odds of success.
SMART is an acronym that you can use to help guide the process of setting goals. It stands for:
Try to outline details around the goal itself to get a clear picture. When you get specific around the objective, it really helps you comprehend the elements you need to reach that goal.
- What exactly do you want to achieve?
- Why is this important?
- Who is involved?
- Where does it need to take place?
If you can’t measure it, how do you know if you are accomplishing your goal? Measuring not only allows you to identify success, but it gives you a way to check up on your progress mid-way.
- If your goal is financial security, what income are you hoping to achieve?
- If you want to improve customer satisfaction, what kind of metric can you use to know if you are improving?
- If you want more social media followers, what is that number you want to hit?
Your goal needs to be realistic and achievable. It’s good to challenge yourself, but don’t make your goal impossible.
- Do you have the skills you need to accomplish the goal?
- If you don’t, how can you get the skills to get there?
- Is the amount of effort you put into it equal to the goal itself?
A SMART goal must be important enough for you to put in the effort it requires to become a reality. It really helps to keep the big picture in mind.
- Is this goal worthwhile?
- Is it the right time to try to accomplish this?
- Does this goal match your organization’s efforts or needs?
To keep you active and accountable, you need a target date. Having milestones and a deadline puts enough pressure on you to keep making progress. Figure out your milestones to keep you on track, and tie your milestones to the goal’s measurability.
- What can you accomplish in one year from now?
- What about six months?
- What can you start working on this month?
If you don’t implement all of these parts in your goals, the three that are most essential are specific, measurable, and time-bound. The clearer something is, the more easily you will be able to achieve it.
To see how it’s done, check out the video by Chris Do at The Futur: