Setting S.M.A.R.T. Goals

The end of the year is fast approaching, and it’s time to start thinking about creating goals for the New Year. A tried and true strategy for setting career goals is the S.M.A.R.T. approach.

  • Specific: Be as specific as possible when you set goals. Address an issue that is important to you and consider what exactly you want to accomplish, why it matters, who is involved, and what resources are required.
  • Measurable: A measurable goal means that you can track its progress, and you can check a box once it’s completed. To set a measurable goal think, “How much?”, “How many?”, and “How will I recognize when I’ve accomplished my goal?”
  • Achievable: Make sure that your goals are realistic and achievable. Make sure it’s within your abilities and time constrictions to achieve. An achievable goal is something that you can accomplish despite any constraints.
  • Relevant: Ensure the goals you set are relevant to where you want to ultimately end up. Do your goals align with where you want to be in the future? Ask yourself if the goal seems worthwhile, if it’s timely, and if it’s meaningful to you now.
  • Time-Bound: Goals should be time-bound, so that you can track progress. We’ve all had goals that we’ve yet to achieve due to lack of urgency created by a deadline. Don’t arbitrarily say you’ll accomplish something sometime. Instead, think about how long it will realistically take you to accomplish and set a time-frame for completing milestones along the way.