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Change Management - 14.09.2020

Posted by Seth Keil

Change Management - 14.09.2020

Agile Goal Setting in Times of Uncertainty

Agile Goal Setting - Taking Notes

Welcome back to the Five Features to Include in Performance Management in 2021 series. This weekly series will help you transform your organisations performance management systems by focusing on a culture led employee experience. This post focuses on how you can use agile goal setting during these uncertain times to transform your workplace culture.

Over the last decade, hiring managers and recruiters have included in job postings with greater frequency words and phrases such as flexibility, adaptability, and ‘comfortable with uncertainty/shifting priorities.’ Although some are searching for candidates who have these desirable capabilities, their organisations remain locked into inflexible and restrictive processes rendering these capabilities ineffective. The traditional performance cycle is one of those processes which needs to become more agile and the place to start is goal setting.

This year proves with increased uncertainty comes increased difficulty in creating long term business objectives or employee goals. The volatility and ambiguity caused by the crisis spreading across the globe has meant shutting down sectors, leading to businesses rapidly shifting priorities, which in turn affects goals. Organisations and employees rely on goals to provide focus and clarity on the work that needs to be undertaken to improve performance.

It makes sense organisations want to improve performance as it has a dramatic affect on business results (increased revenue, increased profitability, share price, etc.). How can organisations be agile and prepare for continued uncertainty?

Put employees at the centre of goal setting

Employees should not feel like goal setting is something out of their control. When placing the employee at the centre of goal setting, you can achieve their buy-in for agile goals which will increase the probability they are achieved. It will also inspire commitment and provide a sense of ownership.

Link individual and business goals

It’s important for employees to understand how their goals are linked to business objectives. Employees are more effective and likely to achieve their goals if they see how they fit into the bigger picture. More importantly, it can provide employees with a sense of purpose, understanding the impact of their performance, and alignment with the organisation’s mission.

Adapt goals as circumstances change

Goal setting should not be a ‘set it and forget it until the end of year’ exercise. Goals should never be static and incapable of being updated. Goals should be dynamic and evolve as circumstances change. Frequently revisiting goals throughout the year and adjusting them will motivate performance despite facing uncertainty.

By placing the employee at the centre of goal setting and creating a culture led employee experience you can transform your performance management systems. This will inspire your employees to reach their potential and will help your organisation to improve overall performance on metrics you can measure.

Next week we’ll be back with The Importance of Feedback and Recognition at Work.

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