Gone Goal – The Movie

by Chris Arlen on January 15, 2015

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Gone Goal - The MovieIf annual goal planning for support services were a movie, it would be the film “Gone Girl.”

Apologies for the reach but goal planning can have that same weirdness the movie has. In goal planning and the movie, appearances are deceiving and motives are hidden.

While most departments set annual goals, those creations can lie dormant with no intent (or resources) to get worked, measured, or reported.

The goal planning exercise by itself has fulfilled its hidden motive. It’s given the boss what was ordered and it’s given the appearance that improvements will be made.

Goal created? Check.

Now, back to routine.

Fast forward, days before year’s end.

Scrape a work product together.

Staple it to annual goal.

Report out.

Gone Goal.

The Challenge: Getting Goals Done

Gone Goal - Getting Goals Done

The intended outcomes for goal planning are to achieve improvements and/or assess performance, activity or results.

However, once planning is finished, goals fall out of sight and out of action. And it’s the Gone Goal movie all over again.

Think about it. It’s more than just an annual planning exercise because once planned, goals must have:

  1. Status Updated along the way by those doing the work -AND-
  2. Progress Reported regularly for the boss’ confidence

2 Overlooked Practicalities: Ease & Visibility

Gone Goal - Ease and Visibility

Here’s where smarter work can be done: in the choice and use of work processes and tools.

1) Updating goal status must be easy to use by many contributors from many locations.

2) Reporting goal progress must be easy to do and make results highly visible.

If you want to avoid the deceit and hypocrisy of Gone Goals, many contributors have to get involved. They have to regularly update their status to tasks assigned them. And if that’s cumbersome or time consuming, it’ll be like pulling teeth; painful and late.

And don’t you want to keep your boss in the loop as to your progress during the year? If that takes too much time, you’re likely to avoid it until your boss grills you. Get ahead of the curve and report progress before the requests.

Beyond Personal: Contributors & Process

Gone Goal Beyond Personal
As your experience will tell you, some departmental goals may become personal goals for your boss.

As a result, status of those goals will definitely be on your boss’ radar as they’re tied to a personal performance bonus or review.

So make a smart move. Make your goal planning into the real deal. Do the research, invest and commit to new work processes or tools that will move the process beyond appearances for the boss, and make it real for everyone involved.

With a smart choice you can:

  • Make updating & reporting easy to do from anywhere & highly visible
  • Motivate contributors to take ownership & accountability for their goal-supporting projects
  • Add regular status updates from contributors & progress reports to bosses

Get that done and you’ll be writing your own movie of happy, successful outcomes.

Gone Goal – The Movie was first published as a long form post in LinkedIn.

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