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There is a goal-setting process, and then there is goal-setting. In the process, goals are set according to one's capabilities. But w.r.t goal setting methods, goals are set according to the purpose of achieving them. Specific objectives are set in this process that needs to be revised for individuals to succeed. Goal Setting Methods

To make sure goals are achievable, they must be specific and measurable. And setting goals with smart goals requires a lot of thought and planning. While setting goals, it's essential to keep in mind the long-term goal while setting short-term goals. 

9 types of goal-setting techniques

One-word goals

One-word goal setting is a method that helps to focus on one single goal at a time. It has become popular due to the success of the book One Word 365, which advocates this approach for both personal and business purposes. One-word goal setting helps set short- and long-term goals, allowing you to set specific goals with a particular timeline. 

Values-based goals

The PACT goal-setting technique involves looking at what drives you to achieve this goal and making daily progress. One effective goal-setting method is the 80/20 rule, which states that 80% of the results come from 20% of the efforts. This means that setting values-based goals involves identifying specific goals you want to achieve, spending most of your time on those goals, and spending less time on other plans. This will help ensure that you maximize your time and energy toward your goal of success.


Another effective goal-setting method is the OGTM method for setting goals. The OGTM method starts broad, creating an objective for your goal-setting process and gradually narrowing in on more specific goals over time. It can be effective, to begin with, comprehensive plans like "Improve health" or "Develop professional skills," but eventually move toward more specific goals like "Improve sleep" or "Improve my tennis game." By creating particular goals that align with your objectives, vision, and values, you'll be committed and dedicated to your goal's success.

Micro goals

Setting goals is one fundamental way to success in a team. It is essential to set intermediate goals that are achievable in the short term, known as micro goals. Micro goals should be specific and detailed enough to help work groups progress towards their final goal. For example, if a team goal is to have a website up and running by month-end, setting micro-goals such as setting up hosting infrastructure or designing the website would help the team work towards achieving this goal. 

Similarly, setting long-term and general objectives, goals that are tangible targets, tactics such as techniques to reach objectives, and metrics that measure progress towards goals can help a team focus its efforts and make better progress towards its goals.

OKR goals

OKR goal setting is a popular goal-setting strategy used within organizations. OKRs, or objective-based goals, are based on objectives and measurable metrics to reach these goals. OKRs provide a clear direction for goal setting, allowing for easier reconciliation of different areas of life. They also improve productivity by reducing the need for detailed planning.

However, OKRs can have disadvantages as well. These include getting lost in the details, OKR overload, and no long-term focus. Well-designed OKRs can help alleviate these issues by setting priorities and creating a goal-related vision; over-reliance on the process can lead to goal paralysis or goal-setting fatigue.

An example of an OKR goal for managers is to build and lead a world-class team. This goal would set specific goals for the overall performance of the group as well as individual plans for each member. In addition to helping individuals achieve their goals, practical goal setting helps teams stay focused and achieve results.

WOOP goals

WOOP goals are goal-setting techniques that help individuals set goals and achieve them. WOOP goals focus on Wish, Outcome, Obstacle, and Plan. By setting exciting goals for you, Wish for success, visualize the outcome in detail, identify possible obstacles that may hinder the goal and plan accordingly. The key to achieving your goals is planning to remove the barriers and achieve the goal. Visualizing the goal in detail can help you see how achieving your goals will benefit you and improve your life. By setting realistic goals, visualizing the outcome of your goals and identifying potential obstacles, you can stay motivated and reach your goals.

HARD goals

Hard goals are heartfelt, animated, required, and difficult. These goals are personal and motivating, requiring the person to set deadlines and create a sense of urgency. The goal-setting process can be successful only if there is clarity on the goal, why it is essential, and how it will be achieved. To effectively set challenging goals, creating a vision of success and how to achieve the goal is necessary. By setting challenging goals that require self-motivation and dedication, you are actively setting yourself up for success.

SMART goals

SMART goals are specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and time-bound. To ensure that goals are clear and measurable, they must be specific regarding what they aim to accomplish and how they will do so. A goal that needs to be more specific and clear is unlikely to be effective. Plans should also be realistic in terms of their time frame. For example, setting a goal to lose 10 pounds by the end of next month would be unrealistic because it takes time to achieve results.

Furthermore, goals should be achievable in light of the available resources and time constraints. If a plan is too challenging or out of one's reach, it will be difficult to motivate oneself to achieve it. Finally, goals should be ambitious to inspire peak performance.

Backward goals

A goal-setting technique called backward goals involves setting your goal to help you decide what steps to take to reach that goal. The purpose of back goals is to translate a vision into measurable goals. For example, if you have a half-marathon goal, your backward goals involve setting smaller goals, such as running 5K or 10K. 

You can quickly find your goal by setting smaller goals to achieve your goal of running a half-marathon. You can also use backward plans if you need clarification on what goal you want to achieve. Instead of setting a specific goal, set the overall success you would like to have and work backwards to identify the smaller goals and targets needed to make that top goal happen.

Locke and Latham's 

The five goal-setting principles developed by Edwin Locke and Gary Lathrop in their book, Theory of Goal Setting and Task Performance, are clarity, challenge, commitment, feedback, and task complexity. These principles help goal-setters set specific, challenging, and motivating goals. Clarity involves setting clear goals that can be measured and understood. The challenge consists in setting goals that require effort to complete. Commitment involves setting goals that are important to you personally. Feedback involves regularly evaluating your progress toward achieving your goals. Finally, task complexity consists of setting measurable and challenging goals.

The goal-setting process should involve considering all these factors when setting goals for yourself or a team. It is important to remember that the goal-setting process is iterative; it requires constant feedback from external sources to ensure progress toward completion.


How you set goals plays a significant role in determining your success. It's essential to set goals that are challenging but achievable. You can set goals based on your values and aspirations. 

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