Welcome to the New Year!
Perhaps you’ve already set a traditional “New Year’s Resolution”. And while that’s great in theory, I find that in practice those well-intentioned January resolutions have a tough time seeing the light of February. I include both personal and professional goals in that category.
Perhaps we wouldn’t fall short if we had an actual plan. Not overly complicated. Call it a blueprint or a road map or a bullet point list. The plan would help us focus on the goals we set out to achieve.
That’s exactly what happened back in 1981 when George T. Doran, consultant and former Director of Corporate Planning for Washington Water Power Company created his S.M.A.R.T. system of effective goal setting.
He created a winner. The S.M.A.R.T acronym has been used by executives and managers across all businesses and industries for decades. Doran identified 5 criteria for effective goal setting:
Assignable – today often replaced by “achievable”
Over the years, the SMART system words have changed, evolved and been rebranded, depending on who’s presenting the information. The acronym has even been extended to SMARTER which includes the criteria of Evaluated and Reviewed. The message remains the same, however: a simple and effective means of goal setting accountability; a system built to work.
Today, I’d like to simplify it even further, using a time-tested acronym we’ve all heard before:
No, the acronym doesn’t stand for Most Valuable Player or Performer, but YES, you, too can lead your company to greatness by implementing M.V.P. The goal setting process is simple:
M is for MANDATORY. No matter your goal you must take action steps toward it every day.
V stands for VERIFIABLE. It’s easier to focus on tangible goals. Create one that matters to you or your organization. It could be the bottom line, of course, or anything else that’s measurable. For example, the number of cold calls you make each day; or a Monday morning team meeting that happens EVERY Monday.
P is the last letter in our simplified, goal-setting acronym, but it actually comes first on the goal-setting list:
P is PRIORITY
Your goal must be a priority EVERY SINGLE DAY. Be it 50 seconds, 5 minutes or 5 hours, your goal must be the focus of your energy if you’re going to achieve it.
MVP goal setting might seem like a lightweight in the world of heavy-hitting, corporate acronyms, but when it comes to accomplishing a goal, it offers the simplicity and economy to cut through the clutter, keeping you on track in the New Year and beyond.
Best of all, it doesn’t matter if it’s a new year or a new day, you can always take action to be the MVP in your organization. My advice? Be the leader. Set your MVP goal today.
How do you approach goal setting? Do you use the same method for career and personal goals? Feel free to share tips below in the comment section.
Need help with implementing your goal setting strategy? Feel free to get in touch for a discovery session.
Heike Heemann, business coach and advisor, brings over 20 years of business experience to her blog.