Our last letter in the acronym SMART is the letter T. It stands for Timely and is critical in tying up the entire SMART package! If you get all of the other parts spot on and miss this one, you might as well have forgotten them all. Here’s why: If a Goal is going to be productive and motivating it must be time bound, it has to have the accountability factor. Nothing says accountability like a time frame to complete the Goal in. The time frame tells the Employee that they need to perform and will need to have it completed at a specific time.
Set a timeframe for the goal: for next week, in three months, in 6 months, etc. Putting an end point on the Goal gives a clear target to work towards. If you don’t set a time, the commitment is too vague. It tends not to happen as the feeling is they can start at any time. Without a time limit, there’s no urgency to start taking action now. Time must be measurable, attainable and realistic as well.
Once you set your realistic end time, you will need to set a half-way point in the time line for a check-up. The mid-point meeting is crucial to both you and the Employee. It tells them that you care about the end result and that you are going to help them if there is any type of problem preventing them from successful completion. During the mid-point meeting make sure you review the Goal, current progress towards the Goal, ensure all resources are available and being accessed by the Employee as needed and that there are no barriers that you are unaware of with the Employee. This is also a great time to give some encouragement and show the Team Member that you are there for them and rooting them on to victory!!