Grace Smith
January 3, 2024

Did you know that only 51% of businesses ever make an effort to manage goals or create aligned ones, and that just 6% of the businesses surveyed actually do so on a regular basis!?

There is no denying the significance of establishing your organization's goals with the appropriate strategy. When implemented effectively, goal management fosters a sense of empowerment among staff members, which raises engagement levels. Strict and capricious output targets are just another way to make people stressed. But you can address this by adopting SMART objectives or OKRs, which will enable you to adopt a more adaptable strategy.

Goal management in employee engagement

Despite the paramount importance of goal setting, up to 90% of businesses falter in achieving their strategic objectives. The question arises: If goals truly matter, why do many companies struggle to get them right?

Encouraging employee engagement requires setting clear, measurable, and role-specific goals for staff. The collaborative partnership between supervisors and direct reports plays a crucial role in reaching these objectives. This involves taking into account the employee's aspirations for personal development, the needs of the intended future role, and the resources at hand.

These employment goals serve the purpose of evaluating performance over the employee's tenure, tracking personal growth, and recommending skill enhancements or continued training. Whether short-term or long-term, the rewards for goal completion should align with their significance.

When managers and employees should discuss goals 

Goal setting is a critical component of leadership, and managers need to have these conversations with their teams regularly. Integrating organizational goals into everyday discussions ensures:

  • Everyone is aligned with the organization's mission.
  • Individual efforts contribute to the collective goals.
  • Managers have insight into performance and can guide improvement.

Here are key times when goal discussions should take place:

1. During goal setting meetings

Often held annually or quarterly, these meetings are crucial for reviewing past performance and planning future objectives. While these discussions may traditionally occur once a year or quarterly, it's beneficial to touch base on goals throughout the year.

2. During regular check-ins

One-on-one meetings provide a platform to monitor progress towards goals, evaluate performance, and address any barriers to achieving these goals.

3. Regular check-ins for underperformance

If an employee is not meeting expectations, frequent check-ins are necessary. These sessions help in intervening early, allowing for adjustments in goals or strategies to get back on track.

4. When priorities shift

Business needs, market dynamics, or budgetary changes may necessitate a shift in priorities. It's important to help employees realign their goals with the new direction.

5. Post-achievement discussions

Once goals are reached, it's time to celebrate and set new objectives. These discussions should focus on continual growth and development.

This may also interest you: Goals for managers: A quick guide to setting and achieving them

Benefits of Goal Management in Employee Engagement

Setting goals has an effect on worker performance when it leads to improved business outcomes, particularly with regard to your personnel strategy. Employees are more strategic in advancing the company when they witness the goal-setting process in action and take part in it themselves. The following are some advantages of having employee goals as part of your talent strategy. 

Employees develop their strategic thinking 

Employees are better able to control their performance when they understand how they contribute to achieving company goals. With a clear understanding of their goals, they can perform better in their daily responsibilities. Educate managers on how to improve this crucial connection between daily work and outcomes.

Increased employee involvement 

Historically, fostering employee engagement has been a challenging task for HR managers.

Interestingly, engagement levels initially surged during COVID-19, aligning with the pre-pandemic trend. It peaked at 36% in the first half of 2021 before slightly decreasing to 34%.

This rise in engagement occurred as many organizations shifted to remote work at the pandemic's onset, necessitating a change in management approaches.

Key factors contributing to this increase include:

  1. Adapted management practices: With the transition to remote work, many companies had to modify their management practices. This often involved granting employees more autonomy, which can lead to higher engagement levels.
  2. Clarity in objectives and goals: Employees tend to be more engaged when they have clear goals and objectives. This clarity helps them to adopt an owner’s or manager’s perspective, allowing them to proactively identify and address issues that could affect the company’s profitability.
  3. Employee autonomy: The increase in autonomy allowed employees to take more control over their work, contributing to their sense of responsibility and engagement.

Employees carry out your strategic plan 

When employee goals are in line with the strategic priorities of the organization, employees could carry out your business strategy with greater intention. Employee performance is more focused when they are aware of how their actions relate to the corporate plan. If an employee is aware of their goals, even routine daily tasks can be improved. Additionally, you could unlock your employees' potential and give them a greater sense of purpose when you apply it to bigger goals.

Final words

Goal setting is a dynamic and vital process for the growth and success of any organization. Creating clear, achievable, and time-bound objectives with well-defined outcomes significantly enhances organizational performance. Such well-defined goals lead to greater employee satisfaction and retention.

To effectively track team progress and assess individual and organizational performance, it's essential to set clear and attainable goals. However, flexibility is key, as setting new goals or adjusting existing ones may be necessary due to changing market conditions. Managers should be prepared to introduce new targets and adapt current goals accordingly. It's also crucial to embrace the reality that not every goal will be met successfully. Ultimately, we all need goals to aim for improvement and progress.

FAQs

1. What is the purpose of goal management?

Goal management is all about bringing everyone's efforts in line with the larger goals of the organization. It's like making sure every team member knows how their work fits into the big picture. It's not just about setting targets; it's about keeping track of how we're doing, spotting where we can get better, and guiding each person along their development path.

2. How important is goal setting for employees?

Goal setting is crucial for employees as it provides them with a sense of direction and purpose in their work.

It helps

1. Measure their performance and progress.

2. Enhance motivation by setting clear expectations.

3. Contribute to their personal and professional growth.

This alignment with organizational goals also leads to increased productivity and job satisfaction.