How To Write Effective Management Objectives

Actually identifying what your objectives are is not actually as easy as it sounds!

Getting this right, however, is an integral part of both individual and organisational performance and is measured via the dreaded Key Performance Indicators (KPIs).

Key criteria can include Customer Satisfaction relating to response times and delivering services and good to the key quality criteria set out in the specification. This seems pretty clear but defining and putting individual Objectives into action is more complicated than the example above.

Key difficulties lie around the following areas:

  1. Are the Objectives easy to define? Are they so clear that someone coming into your organisation totally new could pick them up and understand exactly what was required of them if they took over your job?
  2. Can the outcomes in the Objectives be measured? If there is a numerical level of output required then that is a good position to be in but if they are vague and unclear, how can performance be assessed?
  3. Do the Objectives that you have conflict with each other? There should always be a clear space between them so that assessment can be performed quickly and without overlap or confusion.
  4. Does the relative importance of the Objectives that you have actually change over time so that some have more focus than others? Has the relative weighting of each Objective remained the same over the reporting period and if things have changed are you aware of this?
  5. Is there a conflict between Organisational and Personal Objectives? It is NOT always the case that employees will follow the Organisational Objectives and priorities as specified by senior management and many people will inevitably tread their own path in carving out their careers and development.

Organisational Objectives should focus upon:

  • Cost effective performance
  • Effective control of change that benefits the organisation
  • Avoiding any set of circumstances where output and service delivery is threatened

Individual Objectives tend to focus upon:

  • Maintaining and improving terms and conditions of employment
  • Job security
  • Effective control of change that benefits the individual
  • Avoidance of anything that threatens continued employed status

Time spent in considering and applying common sense in structuring Objectives for staff so that they fit within effective Organisational Objectives is time well spent!

Good Luck!

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