Two Simple Steps to Setting Employee Goals
In today’s turbulent economic environment, is it realistic to set yearly goals for your employees?
Clearly, many organizations face uncertainty in the year ahead. Companies don’t know what the landscape will look like in six months, let alone a year! Consequently, last year, many employees were looking at months rather than years in terms of their career planning. With this in mind, we recommend that senior managers and leaders should change their approach to employee targets.
How Should Employers Set Goals?
- Provide a global yearly overview to their teams – what are the hopes and objectives for the company, and how do these relate to each employee?
- Engage their teams around quarterly goals, which are definable and measurable. Thus, there are achievable targets which can be adjusted and adapted to the uncertainty that surrounds the year ahead.
For decades, January has been the month to launch key yearlong strategies and goals for most businesses. Senior leaders may announce corporate objectives before the end of the previous year, then aim to hit the ground running in the first week of the new year – aligning business targets with employee goals for the year.
However, in a dynamic and uncertain business climate—one in which everything from interest rates to supply-chains is fluctuating substantially—yearlong goals are perhaps illusionary thinking that we can control this turbulent, unpredictable world.
Why are Quarterly Goals Better?
So, stop setting expectations that are hard to meet and difficult to track across twelve months of rapidly changing circumstances. Instead, follow the emerging three-month goal-setting plan. Over three months, you can better understand changing factors and navigate these by iterating your plan when needed. This method is flexible, adaptable and achievable.
Three month goal setting is flexible, adaptable and achievable.
When it comes to employee targets and goals, selectivity is critical. A long list of goals can demotivate employees. A handful is ideal, possibly as few as three. These can really help to provide laser focus to the team, where goals are specific and clear. And it helps make them relatable to the bigger company aims.
Finally, ensure the goals include clear, individual professional development targets for employees. This will aid retention, something many organisations will still face going through 2023. Employees who are learning and growing their capabilities are more likely to stay motivated and remain in post.