The Four C’s of Team Goal Setting
Goals are a great way to improve team performance. Clear objectives with measurable standards should be developed and agreed upon with the team. A simple way to help determine what the team’s goals should be is to use the four C’s of goal setting. The C’s stand for clarity of goals, measurable criteria, worthwhile challenges, and team commitment.
Clarity in a team goal means that it is easily understood by all members involved. The goal definition is specific enough that there are no misunderstandings about what is to be achieved and the team fully understands what is expected of them. With a clear goal, those working towards it will know what they need to do or learn to reach their goal. Clarification ensures that the team understands why the goal is valuable and relevant for them to work on.
criteria Detailed in a goal are the performance measures that must be achieved in order for the team to know that it has achieved its objective. The criterion is a unit of measurement in quantity or percentage that must be fulfilled during a specific period of time and agreed by the team. Having this criteria provides regular feedback to the team throughout the course of the goal so they can make adjustments to their work and behaviors. Without this information, it’s difficult for the team to understand your reward and recognition structure, develop your work plan, and ask for adjustments or help with barriers when needed.
challenge inside the goal is a way to give the team a chance to stretch their skills and show what they can do. A meaningful goal should not simply maintain the status quo or achieve a little more. Instead, you should motivate the team to work hard without getting discouraged or greatly interfering with your quality procedures or necessary routine tasks. A goal that is too small or too big can be more damaging than challenging or motivating.
Commitment is the team according to the responsibility and accountability to achieve the goal. The best way to achieve team commitment is for the team to participate in the goal-setting process. The team must understand how their goal fits with the organization’s visions, mission, and goals. For the team to commit to any goal, they need to be involved in the decision-making process and given the right information or training to know what they can accomplish and why it matters.
Use the C’s to create clarity on team goals, assign measurable criteria, present a worthwhile challenge, and gain full team commitment. The four C’s are a simple method for determining what the team’s goals should be. Clear team goals with agreed measures are one of the best ways to improve team performance.