In creating your own goals for this semester, it is not good enough to just state that you want to be an effective manager or earn an 'A' in the class. While these are lofty aspirations, you are not describing how they will help you to achieve your long-term career goals.
The best goals are SMART goals where * SMART is a handy acronym for the five characteristics of well-designed goals. Specific: Goals must be clear and unambiguous; vagaries and platitudes have no place in goal setting. When goals are specific, they tell exactly what is expected, when, and how much. Because the goals are specific, you can easily measure your progress toward their completion. Measurable: What good is a goal that you can't measure? If your goals are not measurable, you never know whether you are making progress toward their successful completion. Not only that, but it's tough for you to stay motivated to complete your goals when there are no milestones to indicate their progress. Some sample measures are; Productivity, Costs, Time, Quality and Customer Satisfaction. Attainable: Goals must be realistic and attainable. The best goals require you to stretch a bit to achieve them, but they aren't extreme. That is, the goals are neither out of reach nor below standard performance. Goals that are set too high or too low become meaningless, and you will naturally come to ignore them. Realistic: Well-developed objectives are attainable, given stretch effort. People are not as motivated by expectations that are too hard, too easy, or out of their control. The most effective objectives are those that are possible to achieve yet challenging. The time allowed for completion and the total magnitude of the result are important considerations. Unrealistic time frames and too many or too few results can prove to be de-motivating. Consider these questions:
o What resources and support will you need to achieve your goals? o What obstacles will you need...
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