Leadership In Action – 3 Essential Aspects to Goal Communication

person using laptop computer

Last week, we looked at how clear and accepted goals create innovation, proactive behavior and grit in your teams. This week, we look at how we Connect the Dots by communicating Clear Goals. There are three essential aspects that make the goals sharp and well-defined.

 

Paint a Clear Picture of Success

Our research shows that many leaders focus the goal conversation on what not to do – the mistakes that their team members should avoid. These leaders create a clear picture of failure. The conversation needs to focus on what success looks like. What are the metrics that represent that success? What is the feeling derived from that success? What impact will that success have on our stakeholders? And, when do we want to achieve that success? Creating a clear and vivid image of success lets your team lock on to that picture and gather the grit to keep moving toward it.

 

Connect to the Organizational Strategy

Your team wants to know that the work they are doing is connected to a larger goal. They need to know how achieving this goal will contribute to the organization’s success and to the benefit of the stakeholders. This step not only answers why the goal is important, it puts the goal in context with larger goals, creating interdependencies and innovation.

 

Design Clear Expectations

Once your team has a clear picture of success and the context of the goal, they need to know what you expect them to do. What activities and successes from the past do you want them to bring forward into this project? Since we have a new priority, what activities are no longer that important? Who is accountable for what part, and how do you want the team to work together? How will their efforts be measured? What support and tools will you provide, or make available, to ensure their success? This clarity of expectations enables your team to be proactive in working through the project.

 

So, paint the picture of success. Let your team know why it is important and be very specific on what you want. Then, you have a clear goal that allows your team to Connect the Dots and know that their efforts make a difference.

 

Next week, we finish the series with the final aspect of goal setting: making sure the goals are accepted.