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Developing Performance Goals and Standards

SMART planning brings success

Managers and team leaders must continually analyze whether their teams are aligned with the organization’s goals and standards. If the team or a single team member is not performing up to the organization’s standards, then the leader’s job is to put them back on track. Devising a strategy and setting goals is easy; it’s far more difficult to establish and implement a well-defined process that aligns with the organization’s standards, goals, vision and mission.

By using the SMART approach — specific, measurable, attainable, results-oriented and time-framed — with team members, managers demonstrate their commitment to an open and consistent performance improvement process. The SMART approach fully outlines organizational performance requirements, so team members understand these requirements and their own roles in the organization. This approach involves the following:

Because SMART is a collaborative way to develop goals and standards, team members intuitively agree to the process and fully commit to its success, aligning themselves with the organization’s performance requirements.


The Vital Learning Developing Performance Goals and Standards™ program encourages this mutual agreement and equips managers and team leaders with the tools they need to succeed by aligning the team’s goals and standards with expectations set forth by the organization.

By focusing on logical processes and reasonable commitments, Developing Performance Goals and Standards can help even experienced managers build a more effective process for creating goals, outlining clear work standards and encouraging better job performance. The management skill level of first-line managers affects team member retention, overall productivity and even profitability. The relationship between a team leader and a team member is critical to any organization’s success, and an important part of this relationship is mutual agreement about what work needs to be done, why it’s important and when it will be accomplished.

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