In many organisations there is an annual ritual, goal setting time. Time for that tired piece of management advice about SMART goals to be trotted out once more.
Everyone’s heart will sink… Staff will not want to over commit. Managers will push and cajole because there is pressure on them from above. The annual battle is on.
Can you get your bonus without effort? Will you know that, despite all your best efforts, your enthusiasm cannot get you there? Do your managers already know that they have missed their targets. Or have they managed to con their bosses into believing that the “stretch” target they have set has not already been achieved. Have they conned you into working hard for peanuts?
We need to get away from the counter productive nonsense of SMART goal setting. It looks good on paper but completely fails to take into account human nature. Emotion counts! Logic is virtually irrelevant!
Unfortunately it is not going away so let’s redefine it!
Stretch - be creative, be wacky, be different, change the rules for yourself and your organisation, be innovative, organisation want a step change, challenge everyone to be different, to take a different route, every organisation wants to improve, to make any significant change you have to do something different, forget incremental change, take a different direction.
Motivate – each day you should want to go a bit further towards your goals, you should want to meet and overcome any obstacle, your goals have got to be exciting, they inspire you, you should wake up in the night with fresh ideas on how to achieve them.
Alive – get excited, make sure your goals will keep you excited, infect others with your excitement, don’t worry if they look at you as if you are mad — you are! Your excitement will motivate others, it builds teams that endure and succeed.
Reach - set no limits, so what if it is impossible, the greats of this world didn’t settle for possible, why should you? If you get halfway to impossible, it will be 10 times further and more satisfying than your Specific Measurable Achievable Realistic Timebound goal.
Timeless — we have one life, lets keep on pushing, keep on going, keep on having fun, lets keep on driving to our great goals because we want to, never retire, never stop, just get another great goal.