Performance targets are a great tool for companies looking to push forward, because they provide a sense of unity and purpose. Challenging yet achievable goals are essential to keeping all employees motivated to improve performance and maintain high standards, so it makes sense for them to be introduced throughout a business.

All organisations, whether big or small, have the same goal – to be successful. Establishing targets and aligning them with the business’ needs are critical to improving standards and results, and ultimately achieving greater success.

The process of setting targets should be a collaborative process between an employee and their manager, whether they are for the long or short term. Both parties can work together to establish expectations that are attainable, relevant, specific and measurable.

In tune with the bigger picture

Aligning targets with the company’s ultimate aims is essential to increasing motivation. It ensures that each person within the business can see the direction the company is heading in and understand how their job fits in with the big picture – which is the overall performance of the organisation.

In order to achieve goal alignment within the company, they must firstly be clearly defined and then shared across the business. By allowing line managers to access and view the goals of other departments it ensures the whole organisation is in sync and moving in one direction.

With everyone working together towards the same goal, achieving targets can now be seen as a massive contribution to the whole business, which can be a great motivational tool for employees.

Rewarding success

Rewarding those that successfully hit targets is a key motivational tool and can ensure that those within the team are eager to achieve the same sort of success. However, establishing a reward structure that suits both the company and employee can be difficult; after all, each employee will have different values and preferences.

Choosing to reward high performers with target related commissions is fine in a clearly defined sales environment, however what happens for those in the finance or IT department where team-work is essential to productivity?

Whilst individual goals are a great motivational tool, they need to be tied in and linked to more team orientated goals. For example, the IT department may be tasked with successfully integrating a new program throughout the company, meaning small targets can be set to individual members of the team – as a result, rewards can then be judged on a team basis.

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