Setting SMART goals can be tricky. These samples will set you on a path to success.
Want to read something completely crazy? A recent Gallup poll reported that only one third, or 32% of employees surveyed, indicated that their managers help them set performance goals. This begs the question: how can a company succeed if goals aren’t clearly established and communicated throughout the company?
The obvious nature of what it means for a company to succeed – providing a quality product or service – might make goal setting seem unnecessary. The point of SMART goals is to identify and focus on the details required to achieve those umbrella objectives.
Perfect examples of SMART goals
The SMART goal methodology is attributed to a 1981 paper penned by George T. Doran, the then Director of Corporate Planning for the Washington Power Company. SMART stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and, Timely. According to Doran, each goal doesn’t have to meet all five criteria. The point is to use them as a guideline for zeroing in on your objectives.
In case there’s still some confusion, consider the following five samples of SMART goals.
- The packaging line will increase new product packages ready to ship by 20% by the end of this year. This example sets up a clear objective (a 20% increase), which department is responsible (the packaging line), and a deadline for achieving the goal. Any questions?
- Double our web hits within the next six months by offering more solutions for our visitors. Goals are great, but if they’re not based on action, they run the risk of falling into pipe dream territory. Identifying the goal and method of obtaining it makes this statement SMART.
- Expand our services nationwide by the end of 2018. If your marketing and sales department isn’t in line with your corporate agenda, they might unwittingly allow opportunities to fly right by them. This SMART goal is short and to the point. Armed with this basic objective, your staff will not only be looking for ways to expand your market, they’ll also be more motivated, as individuals, to make a mark by bringing in interstate clients.
- We want to cut operational expenses by 20% within the next six months by improving operational efficiency. Again, the goal is defined quantitatively, and temporally, then paired with a general plan of action. When your staff is informed of this SMART goal, they’ll feel empowered to report ideas that might improve efficiency, while keeping their eye out for areas with room for improvement.
- All call center staff must be trained on the new tracking system by the end of the month. For a goal to be SMART, sometimes it needs rally the troops. In this case, the goal identifies who’s involved, and when they need to comply by, so the appropriate parties can take action.
In some cases, setting a goal is all it takes. In others, a little extra motivation can go a long way. The follow ideas can help stimulate your crew.
- Customer service contests. Let’s say your goal is to improve customer satisfaction reports to five stars from 90% of your customers within the next six months. Measuring customer service through surveys is an excellent way of both motivating your employees and clearly identifying progress. Add a little friendly competition to the mix, and suddenly the individual goals of your employees are directly in line with your company’s customer service goals.
- Employee of the month. Most people like recognition for doing an exceptional job, of course, a gift card to a nice restaurant as an additional bonus doesn’t hurt either. Regardless of the prize, employee of the month awards can be geared towards accomplishing company goals. For example, if the SMART goal is to increase customer rewards members by 20% in the next month, you might consider setting the criteria for employee of the month based on who signed up the most new customers.
- Highest average check. Maybe your company is looking for ways to increase sales by 10% during the slowest time of year. In lean times, every little sale matters, so why not keep track of, and recognize, which sales reps are pulling in the biggest orders?
It all begins with feedback
Obviously, if you’re not measuring your progress, you have no idea how close you are to achieving your company’s objectives, let alone making changes necessary to improve your efforts.
CrewHu has a powerful array of tools to help your company keep tabs on its performance, and establish your SMART goals. Our surveys generate customer feedback through products your company can customize for your specific objectives. Don’t take our word for it though – sign up for your free trial today.