Writing SMART Objectives
Specific clearly defined beyond global statements
Measurable tied to data which allows for objective evaluation
Attainable possible, but still challenging
Results-focused measured by outcomes, not activities (progress monitoring)
Time-bound set within a specific time frame
Every New Year’s Day, thousands of people make the resolution to lose weight—and most never do. Part of the problem could be that the statement “This year, I’m going to lose weight!” is neither specific, nor measurable--nor any of the other SMART criteria, for that matter!
So, the first thing to do to ensure success would be to get more specific i.e. “I’m going to lose thirty pounds” and perhaps to add a timeframe to your objective, such as “I’m going to lose thirty pounds in six weeks.” Is this measureable? Yes…provided you’re committed to getting on the scale. Hmmm…attainable? Thirty pounds in six weeks is really too fast to be healthy…fifteen pounds? Sounds better.
Now, we have a statement that reads “I’m going to lose fifteen pounds in six weeks as is measured by my scale.” The only missing piece is the how often you’re going to get on that scale. After all, if all you did was weigh yourself the day you started and then you waited to weigh yourself until the end of the sixth week, you would run the serious risk of not accomplishing your objective, simply because you didn’t know to alter your behavior…in other words, because you weren’t results-oriented.
The final statement? “I’m going to lose fifteen pounds in six weeks as measured by my scale on which I will stand once a week to check my progress.” And now, you’re being SMART!
SMART Objective Samples
SMART Goal Template