HR Advisors Conference Blog

Further thoughts from the conference or about the challenges of being in an HR Advisory role.

Instead of goals, try this instead!

One of the things that we hear time and time again, is that successful companies and successful people set goals. It’s become a no-brainer. Board reports focus on company goal achievement and performance reviews measure team or individual goals. But I’ve found that there is something missing from goal model.

What’s missing is HOW you get to the goal.

You might have goals around sales targets, timeframes on giving advice or engagement survey results. Or at a company level – profit, turnover, customer retention. But how you get to that goal often gets missed.

Here’s a new idea.

Try action planning instead.

Action planning is about setting out a plan of actions that you’re going to take , or that you’ll be involved in. These are smaller chunks of work that will lead to a goal, but are much more satisfying as you can see your achievement as you complete each action. Not to mention that it focuses you much more on what’s in your control.

For example at our HR Advisors Conferences in 2016, we explored how HRA’s can be culture champions. The overall goal on leaving the conference would be to help build the right culture in your organisation. However that may take years to tick off as a goal achieved. In fact during the conferences, during the action planning sessions we built in, people came up with lots of smaller actions that they would try out in the short or long term.

We’ll be doing the same at the HR Advisors Conference 2017 – with Lisa Bell from enableHR running our think tank action planning sessions!

So if you’re back to work and feeling a bit overwhelmed at what goals you have (e.g. getting fit, growing your organisational skills) , try some action planning instead and think about what actions you could take (e.g. go swimming 3 times a week, watch a TED talk on organising yourself, buy a new planner). These may also include some learning goals, rather than performance goals. For example you might have a goal around improving your back stroke, or improving your breathing rather than a performance goal of swimming a mile. I’ve tried this out this year instead of new years resolutions –and as I’ve already achieved some the actions in my plan, already feeling better about it than the usual despondency as you immediately go against the new years goal that you’ve set!!

And the actions you take will lead you towards your goal but as they are action focused, you’ll feel like you’ve achieved something real!


Angela Atkins will be presenting at the HR Advisors Conference in 2017 in Wellington, Auckland and Melbourne. For information about the conferences just click here. There are limited tickets available so get in quick!


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This entry was posted on January 9, 2017 by in Culture Champions, HR leadership and tagged , , .

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