Locke and Latham’s 5 Principles of Goal-Setting

 Locke and Latham’s 5 Principles of Goal-Setting
  1. Clarity: clear goals help with understanding the task at hand.
  2. Challenge: the goal should be challenging enough to prove motivating, but not impossible to achieve. 
  3. Commitment: involve your team in the goal-setting process.
  4. Feedback: measure your progress and seek advice.
  5. Task complexity: be careful in adding too much complexity to your goals as it can impact morale, productivity, and motivation.

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SMART goal-setting framework

Set goals that are:

  • Specific: It will be easier to see what you need to accomplish.
  • Measurable: How will you know when you’ve achieved your goal?
  • Attainable: Or realistic. Is it possible to achieve the goal you’ve set for yourself?
  • Relevant: For businesses, a relevant goal means that it has the potential to impact your business objectives, vision, or values.
  • Time-bound: Give your goal a deadline.
  • Objectives – This is what you hope to accomplish. Objectives usually take the form of broad goals that are not measurable (that’s what the Key Results section is for).
  • Key Results – Based on objectives, the key results are almost always defined with a specific number.
  • Think Big – Define your ultimate goal
  • Act Small – Identify the milestones that will help you achieve that goal
  • Move Quick – Come up with a timeline for achieving each milestone
Big Hairy Audacious Goal (BHAG)

BHAGs focus on “audacious 10-to-30-year goals” that propel you toward your brand’s vision.

Examples from real-world companies:

  • SpaceX: Enable human exploration and settlement of Mars
  • Microsoft: A computer on every desk and in every home
  • Blackpool FC: Reach English Premier League.
Growth Hacker goal-setting
  • Form Hypothesis
  • Select KPI (Key Performance Indicator)
  • Set Goal
  • Execute
  • Track Progress (adjust execution as necessary)
  • Socialize/Iterate (let everyone know how it worked)

One of the unique elements of growth hacker goal-setting is the involvement from the whole team/audience via sharing your progress.

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Clickbait is content that uses manipulative copy to convince users to click on it. Clickbait tends to rely on exaggeration and withholding information to push people into clicking. For example, an article with the headline “Doctors HATE him for using this one WEIRD TRICK…” but just says you should work out regularly is considered clickbait because it compels people click it to learn more while being thin on actual content. Social networks like Facebook consider clickbait spammy and lower its reach accordingly.

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Key Results

Key results take all that inspirational language and quantifies it.

You create them by asking a simple question “how would we know if we met our objective?”

The Rudders and Oars Metaphor
It helps clarify the difference between SYSTEMS and GOALS:
  • Your goals are like the rudder on a small rowboat. They set the direction and determine where you go. 
  • If you commit to one goal, then the rudder stays put and you continue moving forward. 
  • If you flip-flop between goals, then the rudder moves all around and it is easy to find yourself rowing in circles.
  • If the rudder is your goal, then the oars are your process for achieving it. While the rudder determines your direction, it is the oars that determine your progress.

Example: If you’re a writer, your goal is to write a book. Your system is the writing schedule that you follow each week.

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