Learn how to set goals that motivate you.

Specific and motivating.

Learn how to set goals that motivate you.

Goals Need to Be Specific

Employees perform at higher levels when asked to meet a specific high-performance goal. Asking employees to improve, to work harder, or to do your best is not helpful, because that kind of goal does not give them a focused target. Specific goals (often quantified) let employees know what to reach for and allow them to measure their own progress. Research indicates that specific goals help bring about other desirable organizational goals, such as reducing absenteeism, tardiness, and turnover.


Goals Must Be Difficult but Attainable

A goal that is too easily attained will not bring about the desired increments in performance. The key point is that a goal must be difficult as well as specific for it to raise performance. However, there is a limit to this effect. Although people will work hard to reach challenging goals, they will only do so when the goals are within their capability. As goals become too difficult, performance suffers because they reject the goals as unreasonable and unattainable. A major factor in attainability of a goal is self-efficacy.  This is an internal belief regarding one’s job-related capabilities and competencies. If employees have high self-efficacies, they will tend to set higher personal goals under the belief that they are attainable. The first key to successful goal setting is to build and reinforce employees’ self-efficacy.