Goal Setting by Backward Design
Meeting deadlines is not easy for everyone and not everyone is not naturally capable to handle or manage jobs that are deadline oriented. As a result, employees who may be successful at meeting other expectations of one’s occupation may struggle with the intensity of the ominous deadline date as it grows closer.
Whereas, other employees in the same department may be assigned the same type of deadline, with the same other related expectations, and these employees may thrive and even experience an upswing of energy and enthusiasm from a dopamine rush resulting from the intense pressure attempting to meet the date of expected achievement. So what do we do to make sure employees in the corporate world are not failing at meeting deadlines by either not completing the details by the date something is assigned or failing by meeting the deadlines while suffering mentally and physically while attempting to meet the deadline expectations.
Using the Dr. Buzz Method, I always recommend “Goal Setting by Backward Design.” When we goal set by backward design, we establish a date that something is expected to be completed. Then we recognize today’s date. In between the goal date and today’s date, we establish bench marks (identified dates) that allow employees to see if they are on track to actually meet the achievement date on time.
In other words, we have specific dates already establish that represent and measure whether or not goal setters are on time to achieve the desired goal(s) by the desired date. It would be like attempting to save $12,000 in a 12-month period. Instead of just randomly saving money, we would obligate ourselves to functioning with a structured schedule where we save $1,000 by the first of each month. With this process, if we achieve this intermittent goal of $1,000 a month, we can then assume accurately we are on track to meet our annual goal of successfully saving $12,000. But, if we are not on track to meet our $12,000 a year savings goal and by benchmark month 6 and we measurably only have $4,000 instead of expected $6,000, then we know we need to make adjustments in order to catch back up. But, the overall purpose is to not be surprised when you investigate the goal date and you learn you are way behind and it is now impossible for you to meet the desired achievement.
This is a common experience for employees in corporate environments which causes these same employees to experience stress that is technically and practically preventable by using my “goal setting by backward design” method. The structure and process of goal setting by backward design will never let you down in its data collection, its objective presentation of where you really are in the process, and distinctly representing whether or not you need to make adjustments in your process in order to achieve your goal.
When you have this structure, and you are measuring your process using a backward design, and you are aware at all times if you are on track to meet your deadlines, you will avoid experiencing stress. If anything, this process will allow you to prevent stress by being capable of identifying if the deadline(s) is even possible.
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