The importance of defining realistic and achievable objectives

Published on 24/04/2024

The importance of defining realistic and achievable objectives

Published on 24/04/2024
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The importance of defining realistic and achievable objectives

Techniques like drill down make it possible to first define the company’s general objectives and then gradually specify individual objectives for each worker.

Managerial roles should ensure that the company works together towards a common goal. Setting general objectives serves to unify perspectives, preventing each area or department from looking only for its own benefit, thereby detracting from the final goal of the organization.

This post is about managerial roles. If you are interested in this topic, we recommend our free guide on managerial roles:

In addition to these business objectives, there are specific objectives that, together with the former, help translate the mission and vision of the company into actions, after being communicated to everyone. The global goals involving the mission and vision must be reflected and shared, and for this, they are set in short-term goals or for the current year, which are easier to understand and allow for greater control.

Defining objectives is part of the functions of managerial roles due to their significant contribution to organizational results. Specifying goals as objectives is necessary to:

  • Closely monitor achievements: which will allow timely remediation when deviations are detected.
  • Commit to total quality: encompassed in the concept of continuous improvement and supported by measurements that allow objective progress. Because only what can be measured can be improved.
  • Be flexible: linking variable salaries to the achievement of objectives and decoupling them from more rigid and less realistic quantification systems, in terms of efficiency, performance, and productivity.
  • Incentivize: since it is one of the fastest and most effective ways to motivate and one of the best ways to reward an effort that contributes to the successes of the organization.

When defining specific objectives, that is, the goals for departments or individuals, managerial roles must ensure that they are aligned with what is to be achieved: with the mission and with the vision. For this, it is essential that the specific objectives are measurable and that the sum of the specific objectives achieves the general objective. Therefore, they need to be:

  • Coherent: in addition to being aligned with the general objectives (it is important that they guarantee their fulfillment) and with the competencies of the people or departments, they must be easily verifiable (they can include specific tasks to be performed) and consistent with the capabilities of each individual.
  • Communicable: the entire staff must be clear about their personal objectives, but also the departmental and global ones of the company. For this, managerial roles must carry out communication as clearly as possible, ensuring that the message has been understood. The more and better these objectives and their relationship with the general objectives and the mission and vision are explained; the higher the degree of compliance that will be achieved.
  • Achievable: objectives must be realistic and achievable relative to the resources available. It is good that they are challenging, that they pose a challenge, but that they are always achievable, because otherwise the opposite effect would be obtained.
  • Measurable: every objective has to be quantifiable and associated with a period of time. It is the only way to verify its fulfillment. Setting the indicators that allow obtaining this information is essential to measure it and know past and future deviations and the basis of continuous improvement.

Managerial roles and the implementation of management by objectives

The advantages of incorporating objectives into business management as an axis are many; the idea is tempting but requires an implementation that can be truncated by the organizational complexity of the business. Different methodologies and tools for defining general objectives and specific objectives help managers and executives in this process towards improvement, in which managerial roles frequently encounter problems such as:

  • Not knowing where to start.
  • Not knowing how to define objectives.
  • Not being able to align specific objectives or tasks with general objectives.

The key is to reflect how personal objectives are related to those of other departments and the company in general, so that the person can place themselves and their objectives within those of the company. The drill down methodology solves this challenge by first defining the general objectives and then descending in definition to the employee level, always acting according to the time variable. This way, it is possible to achieve the definition of the tasks or operational objectives of each individual.

The project and cost control software from WorkMeter, helps define realistic and achievable objectives, another fundamental requirement for this type of management to function as expected. Its contribution makes it possible to:

  • Better communicate all objectives.
  • People understand that they are at the service of a larger project and that their effort, in addition to being related to the global strategy of the company, is important for the viability of the plan.
  • Implement a management by objectives plan as a reality.

The project and cost control software from WorkMeter, allows defining objectives on any indicator. It can set realistic and achievable objectives on the main indicators it provides (activity, productivity, concentration, application usage, etc.) or on any other external indicator that integrates into the productivity platform, thus obtaining a complete and fully customized dashboard, suitable for the needs of managerial roles and also for those of employees.

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