This edition of Sparked was published and delivered on January 20th, 2023.

Sparked is Fired Up! Culture’s bi-weekly email newsletter focused on what drives culture and engagement in the workplace. This newsletter is for leaders who are ready to get intentional about bringing their team together, building engagement, and harnessing the power of culture to drive results.

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Engage your Team with Meaningful Goals

There’s plenty written on effective goal setting so we’re not going to cover the how-tos today. Here’s a great resource if you’re struggling to get your goal setting work off the ground.

However, there is an important aspect of goal planning that is not covered as often as it should be. And while goal planning is a vital piece of every leader’s work, many leaders miss an opportunity in the process to build engagement with their team.

So where do leaders often miss?

Frankly, leaders miss connecting why an individual on their team should care about goals set at a team or organizational level. Identifying and communicating why each individual should care is even more important when there is no direct financial motivation for an individual linked to hitting or exceeding an organization’s goals.

Take Action to Build Engagement

  1. Establish the right goals for your team (accurate, clear, measurable, and meaningful)
  2. Identify and individually communicate why team members should care about hitting those goals
  3. Communicate how each person’s work impacts the team’s goals
  4. Build your plan to consistently monitor and share goal progress
  5. Watch your team latch on and engage

For your Consideration

Have you considered how to effectively connect the dots between each individual you lead and your team’s goals?

Doing so requires a couple of things:

First, your team needs goals. Make sure they are clear, challenging yet achievable, and the measurement of success is trackable.    

These should be shared goals throughout your team. Everyone should know them. Everyone should understand how their work makes an impact on them. 

Second, you need to know why those goals are meaningful and communicate it. Do this regularly. Why is it worth it to put in the work for those team goals? Why should a team member care to go above and beyond in working to hit the goals? Hint: the answer is probably a little different for everyone on your team. Avoid a one-size-fits-all approach here. 

What opportunity does hitting those goals bring for your team members? Is it delivering on an inspiring mission or purpose for the organization? Does it mean more opportunity for career advancement or additional responsibility? Is there a financial incentive?

Connecting the dots for each person on your team is an important part of your leadership. 

Engagement builds when individuals truly care about team success, they see how their work makes an impact, and they find meaning in the work and results they drive. 

Further Exploration on Meaningful Goals