Get SMART!

A powerful method of getting an organization working toward the same goal or objectives is to clearly define that goal or objectives in SMART terms.

There are many definitions of SMART extant around the world, some specific and some not-so-specific.  The purpose of this post is to provide a working definition that can be applied within any organization.

Goals, objectives and requirements can and should be defined in SMART terms: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Result-oriented, and Time-bounded.

Specific

Specifically, what action is to be undertaken and what is to be accomplished?  This will be declared with an action verb.  Taking this action will result in the Result described below.

Measurable

What objective metric indicates accomplishment?  This will be some quantity with a real unit of measure, such as “dollars” or some other unit of measure.

Achievable

Achievable with what resources, and under what conditions?  Everything is achievable, but only under specific conditions and with real resources.  What are they?

Results-Oriented

What is the measurable outcome or impact?  If we do this, what are the results or impact?  Note that results result from the Specific action, above.

Time-Bounded

What is the time frame?  Absolute or relative?  This year? Before incorporation? Based on the following schedule?

The SMART criteria can also be applied to personal planning activities.

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