With summer coming to an end, it’s an ideal time to reflect on the year and consider what you would like to accomplish before January 2022 rolls around. So download our free template for SMART goals, get comfy, and take the first steps in ending this year with a big win.
What are SMART Goals?
SMART Goals are goals that are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Timely.
Although the definitive meaning of SMART goals has changed over time since its original publication in 1981 by George T. Doran, SMART goals are typically defined in these ways (from the Corporate Finance Institute):
- Specific (simple, sensible, significant).
- Measurable (meaningful, motivating).
- Achievable (agreed, attainable).
- Relevant (reasonable, realistic and resourced, results-based).
- Time-bound (time-based, time-limited, time/cost limited, timely, time-sensitive).
When to use Smart Goals
In my experience, there are certain times in life when SMART Goals are the best option, and there are other times when someone might need to use looser, less structured goals. Listen to what you and your creative process need at this time. Do you need a less rigid goal, or do you need to bring structure to your life in the upcoming months?
In this case, SMART Goals are a perfect tool to use given the short time between now (August) and the end of the year. SMART Goals are a fabulous way to get focused and accomplish one goal by year’s end.
Creating your SMART Goal
Feel free to use our free template for smart goals as we work through each of these questions. Ok, are you settled in and ready to create your goal for the remainder of the year?
Close your eyes and imagine yourself at the end of the year, in just four months.
- What accomplishment would make you feel that the year was a success?
- Or, If you could choose one thing to accomplish within the next four months, what would it be?
Now, let’s apply the SMART Goal system using our free template for SMART goals.
Specific? You probably think that your goal is specific, but try and make it more clear. For example, many designers in our industry might say, “I want to land a contract with an agent.” You could make this goal more specific by describing the type of agent you want to work with. For example, are they a licensing agent, or are they selling the rights to your work? How can you make your goal even more specific?
Measurable? How will you know if you have reached your goal? Will your goal be met if you sign a contract? Will your goal be met if you hit “publish” on your portfolio website?
Achievable? We only have four months before we ring in the new year. Given where you are at this stage, is your goal realistic? So if initially, your goal was to sign with an agent, but you are still working on your first collection, you will probably need to adjust your plan for the year. A more achievable goal would be finishing three pattern collections and then working on a website portfolio in 2022. You want your goals to be inspiring and motivating but still achievable.
Relevant? How is this goal relevant to your life or business? How will it improve things for you? Does it make sense based upon your larger business goals or vision?
Time-bound? We already established that you’ll work to achieve this goal by 2022, so put a big checkmark here.
The next important step is to break down your goal into smaller to-do items. For example, what will you need to accomplish each month to achieve your goal by the end of the year? Then, consider applying the SMART goal system to these to-do items.
In our Goals Reset workshop in the Textile Design Lab, we come together as a community to help each other with this essential step of creating a clear plan for the remainder of the year. Through our private forum, you’ll receive personalized feedback on your plan from our community and team of industry experts.
The workshop begins on August 30, 2021, and you are welcome to join us in the community if you would like to continue refining and improving your goal. Learn more about the community here.