Goals are an important aspect of every organization. Goals are not just important for personal interests but also for career interests. Employee goal management is important as they ensure business success. Goals give employees a sense of direction, a sense of what they need to accomplish in their organization. There is also a sense of purpose attached to it because goals are tied to what is expected out of employees.
Business goals are far more organized in the sense, they are set according to certain parameters. Goals in a workplace are essentially action plans developed for employees so that they get some guidance towards accomplishing those goals. Goal management is also one of the important components of an employee’s self-development and the development of the organization as such. Some organizations follow a certain criterion for setting goals for their employees.
Employee goal management is extremely important for managers because they need to guide their employees. Employee goal management not only improves employee performance but also ensures business productivity. Employee goal management is futuristic in the sense, it takes into consideration the success of the company in the future. It is widely used in employee performance management in an organization often as the first step. It ensures better employee engagement.
In this article, I shall discuss the different strategies for employee goal management and the benefits of implementing these strategies:
Before you set goals for your employees, you need to ensure that the goals meet the aims and objectives of the company. The goals that you set for your employees must be tied to the development of the organization. The reason why employee goals must be aligned to the organization is, employees need to know how they are contributing to the growth of the organization.
When they realize that, they will be motivated to achieve those goals. This reflects as a moment of success on the employee’s record as well as the success of the business. When leaders constantly communicate their organization’s mission and vision through their goals, employees will feel motivated to work towards the betterment of the organization and become enthusiastic and engaged in their work.
It is understandable that as a manager, you feel the need to set goals for your employees on your own. But it will become more helpful for you to get insights from your employees on setting goals. Sometimes it will be better for you to encourage them to set their own goals because they will be able to set goals specifically related to their own jobs. Rather than bombarding them with your goals, let them suggest their own goals.
But then obviously you need to also ensure that the goals suggested by your employees align with the objectives of the company. Make sure that their goals are created for the efficiency and productivity of the organization. Once you establish everything among your employees, you can develop strategies to achieve those goals. The importance of doing this is you are creating an inclusive work culture where your employees are acknowledged for their ideas.
This is a prevalent concept in employee goal management, and not just for employee goals but also for personal reasons as well. SMART is a widely used framework for goal setting and management across the globe. It is easier for you to ask your employees to give their best every day but saying that alone does not help the employee in any way. Having the SMART framework helps you to structure your goal-setting process in an organized manner.
Let us illustrate the SMART framework with an example of Max, who is a content writer in XYZ business services.
Specific- Goals need to be specific in the sense it should be aligned to the employee’s work role. For instance, Max a content writer, her goal would be to produce articles for the company’s blog.
Measurable- Goals need to be quantified in the sense it measures your progress. Since Max must produce content, she needs to write at least 20 articles a month.
Attainable- The employee should be able to achieve those goals and it must widen his/her written skills. Max is writing 20 blogs a month. She can easily strategize how to fulfill her goal in that month.
Relevant- The goal must be relevant to what the employee is doing. It should align with his other objectives. Max must write those articles keeping in mind that the objective is to get maximum traffic to her blog.
Time-bound- Goals must be accomplished in the given deadline or time. Since you have asked Max to write 20 articles at the end of the month, you need to set a deadline stating that she must finish it by the 30th of July.
As we discussed earlier in the SMART concept, goals must be achievable. It is important for you to ensure that your objectives are clear and not ambiguous. Make sure that your goals are not overly ambitious, that you set goals that cannot be achieved at all. Unless you want Max to leave the organization demented. Challenging your employees is one thing, but you must not bombard them with something where their skills are not being used appropriately. Your employees can get disappointed if they fail to meet your expectations.
When your employees accomplish their goals, it is only fair that they get appreciated for their good work. Rewards and recognition play an important role in motivating your employees because they feel valued for their contribution. They don’t like to be treated like washing machines where you stuff them with clothes and at the end of the cycle you expect the clothes to come out clean. Give them timely appreciation in the form of asking them to coach the others and discuss their achievements in a meeting.
Setting goals is one thing, but it is also important that you hold them accountable for the goals that are given to them. As a manager, it is impossible for you to physically go to every person and ask them if they have fulfilled their goals. Give them some autonomy in accomplishing their goals without constant intervention.
This way, they will feel responsible for their goals and would be motivated to fulfill them on time. But obviously, if you notice that they are facing some issues, you must reach out to them and help them with whatever they need to fulfill their goals. In this manner, you build that kind of trust and they will seek your help because you are approachable.
In conclusion, goals are extremely important for an employee because it gives them a perspective as to what is required for the success of the organization. Setting goals for your employees will give them an understanding of the larger goals of the organization. Moreover, as a manager, when you set goals for your employees, you can strengthen your managerial effectiveness, leadership skills, and team collaboration and employee engagement.