Setting Objectives

Every organization, regardless of size, reach or sector should have a normalized process for planning and goal setting. This would be an integral first step in successfully achieving outcomes. It is imperative that the planning and goal setting process be developed on a solid foundation of achievable objectives that provide the organization and its people with a clear view of where they are headed. It also allows for an iterative visioning of the organization’s future that sustains direction and growth.

It is very important that when building a matrix of objectives, a complete view of desired outcomes is accounted for. In order to ensure that objectives provide clarity of expectations and impetus towards the achievement of the organization’s total goals they need to be holistic and reflect the multiple aspects of success relative to the purpose of the work of the organization. Well composed objective statements provide a very real, data-based measurement of progress and success.

Several factors should be taken into consideration when setting objectives. To establish a full measure of success it is imperative that the three following types of standards are employed together.

Efficiency Standards

  • Efficiency is usually defined as the relationship between input and output; that is, between the amount of resources used and the amount of product or service produced. An organization is said to be efficient if it minimizes the resources it uses to achieve a specified level of output.

Effectiveness Standards

  • Effectiveness refers to the level of satisfaction with the product or service being delivered or the extent to which pre-determined expectations or outcomes have been reached. If a product or service receives a high satisfaction rating from the audience to which it is targeted, it is likely to have met those expectations or outcomes and be considered effective.

Quality Standards

  • Quality refers to the methods or techniques by which a product or service was conceived and achieved, usually in relation to end results that meet specified quality parameters. Quality measures indicate whether the job was performed in accordance with professional and/or competency standards, using the best available expertise and most progressive concepts.

Objective statements that utilize a combination of metrics from all three types of standards ensure a complete gauge of what it is one is attempting to accomplish and an accurate assessment of whether it has actually been done.

For more information on metrics and measurement, or for assistance in applying the principles addressed here contact ASSOCIUM Consultants.

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