More than just my favorite past time, setting objectives is a critical aspect of nonprofit management. With competing tasks, shortening deadlines, and a never-ending to-do list….objectives are necessary to prioritize responsibilities and to plan for success.
Setting objectives can be a difficult task, so let me recommend a framework developed by Peter Drucker:
- Specific – Do not generalize the objective; be as detailed as possible.
- Measurable – Consider how you could assess progress in achieving the objective. How can you say you’ve won if no one kept score?
- Achievable – Is it possible to attain the objective? Do not set an objective too high or too wide.
- Realistic – Take an investory of the available resources. Do not count on things to which you cannot gain access.
- Time – Set a specific date for completion. This will help you push toward your objective.
With these criterion, you could set SMART objectives for a particular day at work, a specific project, a new responsibility received, a developing initiative, or a long-term life goal. The possibilities are endless.
How do you use objectives to navigate your professional life? Please leave a comment.