Peter Crysdale is a member of the founding team at Minerva. His official title is “SVP of Hard Problems.”
Minerva is a Google Chrome Extension that creates interactive how-to guides for any web app. Users can learn how to do anything online by simply following a dot. Minerva is perfect for remote workers, students, parents who aren’t great at technology, and new users of a platform to easily learn, share and complete their tasks, in half the time! Sign up for our 2022 Productivity Course in partnership with Clickup and business expert Yvonne Heimann to get your year off right!
In today’s world, we’ve become busier than ever before. It’s not uncommon to feel like there’s more work than we can handle—making setting aside time to create goals feel extravagant, like a waste of the precious little time we do have…
Luckily, there’s a way to shift our perspective on goals!
While setting goals can feel tedious at first, it has been shown to make people significantly more productive in the long run (check out the work of Edwin Locke if you’d like to dig deeper). Having specific and structured goals is like investing in yourself; it’s an investment in saving time, energy, and money, and you’re in control of the ROI. 😉
And if you are a manager, the success of your department (or even your entire organization) relies on setting a clear direction for your employees.
Why Should I Set Goals?
A few reasons to create goals for yourself:
- Creates focus (on what to do and what not to do)
- Motivates you to attain a difficult goal
- Gives you the satisfaction of achievement
A few reasons to create goals for your team:
- Creates shared focus on a common goal
- Motivates and empowers the team
- Gives a feeling of shared accomplishment
Imagine you are setting out to travel to a distant destination. Would you arrive there faster if you took the time to plan your route in advance? Setting business or personal goals has the same effect.
How Do I Set Effective Goals?
So, how do you set goals and what separates a good goal from a bad one?
Start by using your imagination. Be ambitious! Is there something you’d like to achieve that feels just barely out of reach? Aim for that! Make sure it’s ambitious, but attainable and possible.
The difference between an ambitious goal and an unrealistic one is the expectation you set for yourself.
Let’s say someone’s goal is to start their own business and make $10,000 in the first month. They tell people about their business idea, but they have trouble landing customers.
They feel dejected after the first 3 rejections and give up.
They become hard on themselves because they see other people being successful.
What they don’t see is that the ones who become successful aren’t winging it or are “just lucky.” They’re being smart (no, literally).
There’s a useful framework called SMART goals. It helps you gut-check your goals to make sure they’re putting you on the best path. SMART stands for:
- Specific (not too vague or generic)
- Measurable (can you use numbers to evaluate success?)
- Attainable (ambitious, but within reach)
- Relevant (not random)
- Time-bound (needs to have a deadline)
Note! Setting a deadline is an important part of setting a goal. Otherwise, it’s too easy to put it off (e.g., I’m going to be on Broadway someday…)
Here are a few examples of SMART goals:
- By the end of the year, I will has trained for and completed a 10k race
- We’re going to get 10 new clients by May 31
AND here are a few examples of poorly written goals:
- I want to lose weight
- I’m going the moon some day
- This year, I’m going to interview George Washington
These statements aren’t SMART goals because they don’t keep you accountable. The lack of structure and a timeline makes them more likely to fail.
When you’re setting goals, don’t forget to be SMART!
How Can I Use ClickUp To Set Up Goals and Track Progress?
At Minerva, we use a particular type of goal setting called OKRs (Objectives and Key Results). You can find many blog posts that discuss this system in detail.
Side note: Minerva lets anyone create interactive guides on top of any website or web app. We’ve incorporated clickable guides below; making it super easy to get started with Goals in ClickUp. 😉
- Example: At Minerva, we have a goal of getting 10,000 followers on our LinkedIn page by the end of Quarter 2.
Once you’ve established the Goal in ClickUp, you want to Set Intermediate Targets In ClickUp (Follow this Interactive Guide). Think of Targets as markers or milestones on the journey to completing your Goal.
- Example: To achieve Minerva’s Goal of getting 10,000 followers on our LinkedIn page by the end of the quarter, we plan to:
- Post 15 pieces of content in April
- Get 100 RSVPs for a Webinar in May
- Partner with 3 content creators by the end of Q2
When we’ve completed a Target, we get the satisfaction of Marking a Target ‘Complete’ in ClickUp (Follow this Interactive Guide). This is the best part! 🎯
BONUS: You Can Track Progress and Engage Team Members In Your ClickUp Goals
For complex goals and/or organizations with multiple teammates, it’s critical to have a solid plan for tracking and collaborating.
Try using Goal-Setting Templates!
How often would you like to check in on your goals? Let’s start by Setting Up A Reminder (Follow this Interactive Guide). At Minerva, we review progress monthly.
Additionally, it can be helpful to quickly Share Progress Toward A Goal (Follow this Interactive Guide). You may consider sharing progress with:
- Your Manager
- Team Members
- An accountability partner
Finally, it may be helpful to distribute the load by Assigning a Target to Someone Else (Follow this Interactive Guide).
Setting goals can help you be more ambitious AND more productive. It can even help align people to a common purpose.
Tools like ClickUp and Minerva are useful for keeping you on track of your personal and professional goals. It may seem like a goal is too farfetched, but sometimes all you need is a little organizational help. Using ClickUp’s platform allows you to have a birds-eye view of all of your tasks in one place. This will keep you accountable and remind you what steps to take to achieve that goal.
With Minerva, you can easily remove the blockers that used to stop you. Minerva’s interactive guides can help you to set up that Shopify store or update your Linkedin in seconds, instead of spending hours Googling how to do so. With Minerva and ClickUp powers combined, you’ll learn the simplest and most effective ways to tackle your goals.
Now, who’s ready to get started? 🙋
If you have questions regarding the goals feature in ClickUp, reach out to their ClickUp Coaches and Customer Success Managers—they’ll help you get set up for success! ⭐️