“The thing about goals is that living without them is a lot more fun, in the short run. It seems to me, though, that the people who get things done, who lead, who grow and who make an impact… those people have goals.” — Seth Godin


Goal setting is crucial because it helps you look at where you are now and where you want to be in the next few years. It is essential because it gives you a helicopter view or a zoom-out perspective of where you want to go. It also helps you think about what steps to take to get there.

Many people struggle with goal setting. And the truth is that some goals are met, and some are not, and it is important to know why.

I’ve found that people often make plans based on what others think or are already doing. It isn’t always bad; after all, healthy competition pushes us to do more.

However, creating goals based on other people’s goals can be disastrous if that goal isn’t really the right one for you. You give up in the middle of the process and feel shipwrecked.

One key question I ask myself is, “How do I feel about this?” I take that as a signal if I feel uncomfortable or unsettled or somehow not as motivated as I should be. My fellow coach said that if you start making excuses for not meeting your goals, it’s a sign that something is off.

Ask yourself what’s stopping you from hitting your targets, and be honest with yourself. It could be that you don’t want to go there. These signs will tell you that the goal you’ve picked isn’t the right one for you at this point in your life.

Over time the process of setting goals changes. Most likely, your goals today will differ from those you make tomorrow.

What are the blocks that can be in the way of you hitting your goals?

In this whole process of focusing on your goals and defining what your goals are, it’s essential to realize that in the environment that we live in right now, everything is ever-changing. Things are happening so fast. It’s changing every minute, every second, every year.

What you need to do with goals and changes is to look at what is realistic for you now, what you need to adjust based on the current environment, and what new strategies you can try based on what’s changing around you.

Make your goals relevant. One way to ask yourself if something is relevant is to look at what’s essential for you. People change, and they also change with the environment around them. So it is important to recognize where we are as the environment around us changes. And when we’re clear about that, we can make better decisions.

How can you set yourself up for success when it comes to personal goal setting?

Here are five tips to help you with this process.

#1. ASK

We can only do so much. We are not good multi-taskers even though we think we are. Prioritize and focus your efforts on one thing that will matter most, master that, then move on to the next goal.

        • What is the one thing that will help you grow?
        • What is the one thing you can do that will make the most impact on your life today?

#2. IDENTIFY metrics and milestones.

It goes hand-in-hand with choosing one thing to focus on. Breaking down your journey into steps helps you with the next step, which is to track your progress.

        • What are two action steps you can do this week to achieve your goal?
        • What do you want to achieve this week for this goal?

#3. MONITOR progress, wins, and setbacks.

Celebrate your achievements towards your goal, no matter how small. Give yourself that pat on the back to encourage yourself to keep going. When you face setbacks or disappoint yourself with less-than-expected progress, take a step back and assess. Adjust your action steps as needed. Give yourself space to make changes to your plan.

        • Where did you fall short?
        • What do you need to do differently?

#4. BE KIND to yourself.

We tend to beat ourselves up when we don’t meet our targets. Take things by phases and allow yourself to breathe and recalibrate.

#5. PRACTICE ACCOUNTABILITY by finding an accountability partner.

Having mental, emotional, and social support is especially useful in our journey toward self-improvement. Humans tend to feel responsible toward others with whom they’ve shared their goals. When you’ve told someone what you plan to do, you’ll feel accountable to them, and they’ll feel accountable to you.

Having someone hold you accountable will remind you of why you’re doing this in the first place. They’ll be your cheerleader when you need that extra push. They’ll be that encourager when you feel demotivated. Make sure this person will check on you and your progress.

Setting Goals for Organizations

Setting goals is critical for organizations. Every month, quarter, and year, businesses must assess where they are today and where they want to go.

Many of the goals can be idealistic rather than realistic. We must consider what will make the goals more attainable. It’s also something we can strive for, even if challenging. We must be able to hold conversations and interactions with people to determine whether or not this is possible.

When the goals are big, changes in the organization are expected. It is critical to consult with key stakeholders, be realistic, and do check-ins regularly before setting goals.

Check-ins are essential because they allow you to re-calibrate where you are and want to go. And because our surroundings change so quickly, we must be adaptable.

Managing Change Through Goal-Setting as A Leader

“The Only Constant in Life Is Change.”- Heraclitus

Massachusetts Institute of Technology Human Resources states that change management is a combination of ideas, strategies, and skills to handle change effectively. These can be used to plan for change, implement change, and support continuous improvement after the change.

You can’t always know what will happen in the future or make a plan for everything that could occur. But successful organizations can anticipate and deal with changes. They never lose sight of their mission and goals, and their plan for dealing with change is always in line with the primary goal of their organization.

Companies must adapt to new technology and economic changes. According to Gartner, the average organization has made five structural changes in the past three years. Seventy-five percent of these companies aim to start more transformation projects in the next three years.

As a leader, it’s your job to keep an eye on the future, make sure your team is going in the right direction, and plan a few steps ahead of the present. You must understand your role in managing change.

Setting goals is a big part of being a leader, but you need more than your vision to reach those goals. It also requires the help and work of everyone in the team.

As a leader, when you’re experiencing many changes in the environment around you and the organization, and there are specific goals that you want to achieve, ask yourself these questions:

    • What are the things I can work with that are within my control?
    • How should I look at these challenges so I don’t get too caught up in the details and instead see the bigger picture?

When we can see the bigger picture, it lets us know how our decisions affect the business now and in the future.

With change, there has to be some openness and flexibility to do different things, to be able to challenge the status quo, and to be able to be innovative and creative

I always tell my clients to start with a beginner’s mindset. When you’re a beginner, you’re curious, open, and less fearful. You want to try new things.

Leaders tend to stick with what they know because they are so used to it. But the question is, is it helping you or not? So you have to know when there are things you need to let go of that are not helping you anymore, based on what is changing around.

To manage change, you must be adaptable and flexible. It is similar to water constantly flowing. Follow it and see where it is headed because the more you oppose and fight it, the more you will be unable to see solutions. But the more you go with it, the more you will be able to be objective about it. You’re able to see what’s happening, and you’re able to make better decisions.

How do you approach goal-setting in your organization? How does it contribute to your change management strategy?