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Remaining SMART in a high-pressure economy: A goal setting approach

12 months ago by Andrea Amato
goal setting

​Our present economy demands a hardworking society eager to compete alongside global work trends, and this demand has exacerbated with the recent COVID-19 pandemic. Goal setting is a practical strategy adopted by managers to sustain workplace motivation and complete targets. Albeit not a novel phenomenon, goal setting theory includes the mnemonic acronym SMART; a guiding reference to successfully construct goals. The following post will deconstruct SMART and explore how it can assist in creating a motivated workplace culture for jobs in Malta and beyond.

SMART refers to goals that are:

1. Specific

When brainstorming workplace objectives, a main priority should be to make these specific in what you are looking to achieve. If the objectives are vague, so will your results!

2. Measurable

Goals should be constructed in a way that they can be measured, in other words, that progress can be monitored. One way to ensure measurability is noted from above in making specific objectives. The clearer the goals, the easier they can be later referred to during evaluations.

3. Achievable

Goals should be constructed according to available resources and assigned to individuals able to complete them. This step is important in ensuring positive performance reviews and has the potential to increase one’s self-efficacy in the workplace.

4. Relevant

Additionally, goals should align with your current workplace climate and are relevant to the organisation as a whole. Goal setting needs to be feasible; resources are accessible, and targets are obtainable.

5. Time-bound

Lastly, goals should be managed within an agreed upon timeframe. This supports goal clarity and sets a realistic context as to when objectives can be achieved.

Finally, the SMART acronym is still used today despite its dated definition. A quick online search will find SMART to have been adapted in a variety of ways, though its core motivational value remains. SMART leads a beginner’s guide to goal setting and further research and consultation should be advised when looking to employ such strategies for jobs in Malta and elsewhere. The aim of this post is to highlight a working motivation strategy that prioritises workplace targets, and when followed properly, celebrates workplace achievements. A focus on performative triumphs is a positive way to foster development in an organisation and strengthen a collaborative workplace culture.