Goals are critical to any organization’s success. They provide a benchmark for measuring performance and helping the company make progress toward its vision, increase profits, and maintain enthusiastic and engaged teams.
Although most people have individual goals, team goals are also critical to organizational success. These objectives require contributions from each team member, and when everyone fulfills their role, they can help improve overall performance and enhance the bottom line. In essence, team goals ensure everyone pulls the cart in the same direction while working on the same objectives and clarify the importance of individual contributions.
Our Inergroup Insourcing Solutions team’s experience matching leaders in project management in Irving, TX, with companies seeking seasoned professionals gives us unparalleled insight into the goal-setting process. Here, we share some of our best tips for setting achievable goals that can energize teams, support collaboration, and create objective measurements for evaluating performance.
1. Understand the Company’s Long and Short-Term Goals
The first step in setting realistic goals that effectively guide team activities is developing a clear understanding of the organization’s long- and short-term priorities. Team goals must align with the organization’s purpose, priorities, and overall performance expectations. This ensures your team understands the “why” of their work and has a clear picture of how they influence the bottom line.
2. Involve Team Members in the Goal Setting Process
Engaging team members in discussions about organizational objectives improves goal quality. Your team may have insights on how to make improvements and measure success that you might not otherwise consider. Involving the team also ensures they set goals that are meaningful to them, a critical element of securing buy-in and ongoing enthusiasm.
3. Set SMART Goals
Realistic goals follow the SMART framework, which stands for:
In other words, your goals should not be vague or unquantifiable. A goal like “Increase communication among team members” is not a SMART goal because it does not define increased communication, create a time frame for achieving it, or provide a means of measurement. A similar SMART goal might look like “Meet as a team once a week to discuss project status and roadblocks to reduce missed deadlines by 50% within three months.”
The revised SMART goal establishes a specific action, a way to measure practice, makes it relevant and attainable to the team, and sets a deadline. It doesn’t leave anything open to interpretation and establishes accountability. SMART goals eliminate confusion and guesswork and put the entire team on the same page.
4. Track Progress
One way to know if you set achievable goals is to track progress at regular intervals. Although it can take time to see results, waiting until the end of the quarter or the year to measure progress could lead to disappointment. Tracking the team’s progress on an ongoing basis can identify unanticipated challenges or other issues that hinder goal achievement, allowing you to make necessary adjustments to support success.
Checking on the team’s progress also lets you know when things are going well and moving along faster than anticipated. You may be able to reallocate resources to other initiatives, and the team stays motivated when they see progress.
5. Empower Teams to Meet Their Goals
Teams are most successful when individuals have the tools to achieve them. Aligning individual goals with team goals gives people more ownership over their contributions. Knowing exactly what they are working toward helps people be more proactive in their day-to-day work and make steady progress toward their personal goals.
Leaders can empower their team members by:
- Assisting with goal definition and identifying milestones
- Making time for regular one-on-one progress updates
- Offering feedback
- Providing support, advice, and guidance when necessary
Leaders can keep their team engaged by showing that they share the commitment to the goal. Commit to being transparent about your work and investing in the goal-setting and achievement process.
Turn to Inergroup Insourcing Solutions for Dedicated Project Management Services
Setting realistic and achievable goals isn’t always simple and straightforward. Juggling multiple stakeholder priorities, project risks, and challenges from external forces can make the process feel overwhelming—and actually reaching a consensus seems practically impossible.
AT Inergroup Insourcing Solutions, we have experience helping businesses thrive by supporting functional, goal-oriented teams and best-in-class project management. Our personalized, comprehensive insourcing solutions save time, reduce expenses, and increase efficiency by supporting individual and team goals.
Call us today at (972) 914-0753 to speak with one of our experienced Irving, TX-based project management professionals about how we can help your business achieve its goals and grow the bottom line.