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Take an exercise on SMART here | Mobile Edition |

All businesses need to set objectives, objectives are important they focus organisations. Businesses that have specific aims are usually more successful than those that don't; because a business with objectives knows what it is trying to achieve. Objectives can be set in all areas of the business e.g. sales, production, finance and marketing.

SMART

An effective way to set objectives is to follow the well known acronym SMART. A SMART objective is

Specific,

Measurable,

Achievable,

Realistic and

Time scaled

An objective that follows SMART is more likely to succeed because it is clear (specific) so you know exactly what needs to be achieved. You can tell when it has been achieved (measurable) because you have a way to measure completion. A SMART objective is likely to happen because it is an event that is achievable. Before setting a SMART objective relevant factors such as resources and time were taken into account to ensure that it is realistic. Finally the timescale element provides a deadline which helps people focus on the tasks required to achieve the objective. The timescale element stops people postponing task completion.

 

SMART Objectives

 

SMART Objective Example

The table below uses an example objective from a fictional software company, to illustrate how to apply the SMART objective principle.

 

Table with example to illustrate SMART principles

Conclusion

Organisations, businesses and people set objectives everyday often without realising it. If they test their objectives against the SMART principle, they will increase their chances of success. Once a SMART objective has been set, the next step is to write a plan detailing how the objective will be achieved. Click on the following link to learn how objectives differ from strategy Objectives Strategy and Planning. Or the following link if you would like to know about the structure and content of marketing plans Marketing Plans.

 

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