This is the time of year where each leader works with their department to set goals for next fiscal year. Those should be ones that roll up and help achieve the goals of the system. Providing clear direction is necessary when developing goals whether for the hospital or personally. The 5 characteristics of an effective goal can be remembered by using the word SMART.
S – Specific - your goals must be specific. Some vague notion will not work. For example, if your goal is to lose weight, your goal should state how much weight you want to lose.
M – Measurable – the goal has to be something you can measure. In order to see if you are making progress you have to be able to have access to the numbers that are meaningful to your quest.
A – Achievable – is the goal something that can be achieved? You don’t want to set yourself up for failure by setting goals that can never be reached. This will lead to defeat. However, goals should never be too easy either.
R – Realistic – when looking at history and knowing what you know about the future, is your goal realistic? Too low of a goal can cause complacency and too high of a goal will cause frustration among a high functioning team.
T – Time Oriented – setting incremental steps to achieve the ultimate goal will result in success. Often team members will look at the goal that was set and become defeated, however, if you break the goal down into incremental successes and timelines, the ultimate goal is more achievable than originally thought.
Remember, just setting a goal is not good enough. You must also have a plan. A goal without an action plan is just dream. Dreaming is good but reaching your goals is even better!
Until next time……