Succeeding at Goal Setting
The first step in achieving a personal or professional goal is to set the goal. That sounds simple, doesn’t it? It can be once we learn and practice a few steps.
You and your learner may have heard that the best goals are SMART: Specific, Measurable, Attainable and Action-Oriented, Realistic, and Time-Bound.
Let’s try an example: Iris wants to learn to complete the paperwork at her job. Currently, every time she has to fill out a form, she is struck by anxiety and fears that someone will realize how she struggles.
Specific: Iris has five forms that she has to use the most frequently. These are the five she wants to master first.
Measurable: Iris will track how long it takes her to complete the form and the number of errors her supervisor identifies.
Attainable and Action-Oriented: Iris feels that with practice and the guidance of her tutor, she can succeed in achieving her goal. To get to the finish line, she and her tutor will devise a strategy of actions and activities.
Realistic: Iris has achieved her prior goals of writing a note to her child’s teacher and completing some other paperwork. This will be the next step.
Time-Bound: Iris has decided to achieve this goal within three months, which will be before her next work evaluation.
As you can see, going through the goal-setting process is a valuable exercise in itself. It employs a variety of skills, including planning, decision-making, assessment, research, and problem-solving.