#GoalCrushing: 4 Must-Have Ingredients for Success

Karl R. LaPan, President & CEO, The NIIC

Goals are what move us forward in our personal lives, and the same can be said for our organization’s health. But not all goals are created equally. Also, not all goals are within our control. Have you ever heard the familiar organizational goal challenge of… do more?

This is what happens when you have a successful year and your organization is working to set your next year’s goals. Every organization is trying to improve and push their performance to higher levels.

Beyond SMART goals, consider the following factors when setting key performance indicators. How can you determine if your goals are appropriate for your business?

It’s in line with your mission.

What’s your why? What driving force is behind your product or service? Your goals should take into account your company ethos. For example, say your company is committed to giving back to the community. A goal might be to pledge so many employee volunteer hours each year or make small grants to local organizations to further your organization’s passion and interests.

It stokes passion.

The best goals get people excited and motivated to move past obstacles to achieve success. You want everyone to know that their individual contributions matter and move the needle. This not only creates excitement but also inspires pride.

Stretch goals can also spark excitement on an industry level. Take a recent Harvard Business School article which observed, “Super stretch goals are thought to provide inspiration, a sense of mission, for the most capable and adventurous of those seeking to join startups.” However, there is and can be a real downside to super stretch goals including, “provoking bad behaviors and producing little communication between the ranks and the top about how they [super strewth goals] were (or were to be) achieved.” You can garner attention when the competition sees you’re tackling a huge problem. Regardless of the outcome, you’re making waves with your goal setting because you’re creating brand awareness by presenting them with a concept that can’t be ignored.

Read Stre.me’s latest blog on how to increase your confidence as a business leader by using learning, behavior, and performance goals. Stre.me’s strategic boost template might just assist you in setting manageable, actionable and measurable work plans.

It scares you.

Sometimes the worthiest of goals instill fear. Fear can be paralyzing, but that forces you to take a leap of faith to get out of a rut. It’s these experiences that often lead to innovation. If you ask Tim Ferriss, harnessing our fears can be rocket fuel for moving forward. In his TED talk, Ferriss encourages us to fully envision and write down our concerns in detail, in a simple but powerful exercise he calls “fear-setting.” This practice can help you thrive in high-stress environments and separate what you can control from what you cannot.

It’s tied to a greater good.

Today’s consumer is more socially-minded than ever. Millennials, especially, are looking for substance from companies they support. They vote with their dollars. So that means if your goal is tied to a more significant social good, it humanizes your brand. Customers won’t see you as simply a widget— their support for you means they’re also making an impact. In other words, they develop a positive association with your brand.

This appeal to the heart (vs. the head) is an added way that customers justify their purchases. Purchases are often driven by instinct. That means when it comes time for them to make a decision, they’ll default to emotion. That’s where your social purpose can be the determining factor in driving conversions.

Tap into the power of mentorship to set and achieve goals. When you come to The NIIC, our engaged mentorship approach matches you with subject-matter experts, serial entrepreneurs, and service providers. Mentors are chosen based on their expertise as it relates to your needs, business challenges, and strategic opportunities.

Contact us to learn more.


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