SETTING GOALS

Setting goals is a PROactive move rather than a REactive one. Goals are specific, realistic
reminders of the accomplishments you visualize. They can be long-range, intermediate, or shortrange goals.

WHY IS A GOAL IMPORTANT?

Benefits are real; they are significant; they are relevant. They
• Give us direction
• Motivate us
• Make us feel good
• Help us visualize what is important
• Point out our strengths and weaknesses
• Help us make decisions
• Make us responsible
• Force us to set priorities
• Make us feel committed
• Develop group morale
• Measure progress
• Sharpen our leadership skills

REASONS PEOPLE DON’T SET GOALS

• Predictability – resist change
• Conditioning – habits
• Belief in miracles
• Fear of losing
• Fear of winning
• Over expectations

DEFINING GOALS

Your goals must be worded in a way that allows the following criteria to be met. You should write your goals using ACTION terms: to increase, to eliminate, to improve, etc. Check the wording of your goal. Is it clearly written?
SMART Goals are:
• Specific
• Measurable
• Attainable
• Realistic
• Timely

Okay, now that we know what it has to be, how do you get to that point??

Follow the FRAME process (source: the Missouri Association of Student Councils summer workshop curriculum guide)
FANTASY – dream your wildest dream; brainstorm; put it all down on paper.
Ask yourself: What do I/we most want to accomplish?
REALITY – How badly do you want this dream? How hard are we willing to work? What are the risks? BE HONEST in assessing it.
AIM – Clarify the SMART areas of this goal. Is it attainable? Realistic? Etc.
METHOD – Plan your attack. Generate the possible ways to attain it and then narrow the alternatives. What steps do you need to take to accomplish your goal?
EVALUATION – Process your results. This is not the last step, but a continuous one to help you reach your goal. If you fell short, figure out what stopped you. Continue to modify and work on your goals.

SECRETS OF SUCCESSFUL GOAL SETTING

• Set both short-term and long-term goals
• Write your goals down
• Post them. Keep them with you
• Revisit them on a regular basis
• Focus on one or two goals at a time

SETTING GOALS IN GROUPS

For a group to be truly effective, members must have a common focus or reason for belonging. Setting goals allows you to reach a common focus.

1. Brainstorm for possible goals.
• Keep in mind the group’s purpose
• Discuss what the group should accomplish
• Make sure everyone participates and all ideas are recorded

2. Set priorities among the goals.
• Narrow the list down
• Discuss the goals in relation to the group’s needs
• Rank the goals in order of importance
• Achieve consensus on a few important and specific goals

3. Select activities/projects to help you achieve your goals.
• Determine what needs to happen and then make short-term and long-term plans

4. Develop action plans.
• This goes back to SMART goals
• In a group you also need to delegate responsibilities
• Put steps in a chronological order if appropriate
• Set timelines/mini-deadlines

DEVELOPING AN ACTION PLAN

Each step of the plan is a specific task that must be completed to reach the larger objective. Setting goals is essential, but if you don’t give yourself a plan to achieve them, they are all but worthless.

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Contributed by:
Kathy Daly
Retired Herff Jones Special Consultant
Former JEA Yearbook Adviser of the Year