Your role as a leader is to deliver results. When you deliver results your organisation benefits and you personally benefit. SMART is of talked about in terms of goal setting but the SMART approach in this article is about the things effective leaders do to achieve results. So what are these SMART things?
The S in the SMART approach is about strategy. Leaders work with their teams to develop a compelling vision for the organisation, get people to buy in and develop the strategies to realise that vision. They focus not just on the short term but on the medium to long term. The focus is on sustainable and lasting success.
The M in the SMART approach is about measurement. If an organisation is to move from ideas and vision to results, it needs to take action. Some of those actions will be a success, others might work out differently than expected and some might not work out at all. Measurement is the way of determining whether you are on or off track and whether you need to make adjustments.
The A in the SMART approach is about accountability. As a leader you need to make clear to others what outcomes and results they are expected to deliver and then hold them to account. Leaders are often fantastic at setting the outcomes but are often less effective when it comes to following up. It is important that accountability is seen as feedback and learning as much as it is checking results and progress, otherwise much of the value will be lost.
The R in the SMART approach is about results. Effective leaders know that they must focus on results and at the end of the day it is results that matter. Leaders make sure that they and those that are leading are stay focussed on results and priorities rather than getting distracted.
The T in the SMART approach is about taking responsibility. As the leader the buck stops with you. The best leaders are ready to stand up and take responsibility when things do not go as well as planned. This can be tough and challenging but is a vital part of being an effective leaders and achieving success.
By John Benson