Alas it’s the start of the new year, but we’re already past the 21-day mark – the amount of time it takes to practice new habits until they become incorporated into your life. For us HR professionals, it also means that our annual goals for the company and each employee, are… late. Well, maybe they’re in the works or perhaps your company is ahead of the curve and their goals are ready – but we’re still focused on how our work will align with said goals, and how we can out-perform each goal to receive top billing, this time next year.
Goals are just a symptom of the larger problem: your value as an employee and as an HR department, isn’t clear. The same can be said about each employee at your company.
You don’t need any additional goal pressure. But wouldn’t it be great if your goals actually meant something that you could get excited about each day you show up to work?
And bonus – HR can move from the goal police, into helping employees (including your fellow HR team members), feel more connected and grounded to making a true impact this year.Wouldn’t it be great if your annual goals actually meant something that you could get excited about each day you show up to work? And bonus – #HR can move from the goal police, into helping employees be more connected. Click To Tweet
Our current goal setting process, yes – even the cascading of goals, is deeply broken. But the issue isn’t with how SMART our goals are – it’s that our goals don’t mean anything. We’re often left trying to “fit” our work and upcoming projects into a broad company statement like: “be more innovative” or “develop consultative acumen.”
Do you actually want to do those things – I mean, once you figure out what they actually mean and how you could possibility deliver that, does that add any value to the work you have to do in your daily job?
Setting goals and having your annual performance rated on these goals, is likely not going away (at least not this year) for most of us. Goals need to be set – but the way we approach goal setting, and HR’s commitment to each employee’s success, can greatly impact our biggest focus – true employee engagement.
Set Intentional Goals that Drive Engagement
1. Inventory and Assess Your Deliverables
Before you can connect meaning to your work and how it impacts the greater good of your company, you need to clearly identify what your job is (and isn’t) and the various deliverables and projects you are a part of. Look to last year – what annual HR events did you lead, what projects did you participate on, what type of employee interaction did you have, and so on.
You need to fully inventory your role to find the nuggets and best examples of how you are contributing. Then look forward – what’s expected of you this year, what has been added to your plate that will enhance your personal growth or your department’s success in the coming year?
Likely, you’ll end up with well more than the three to five items you’re “supposed” to carry as goals. That’s ok – we’re simply assessing the workload and expectations as of today – which we all know, will invariably adjust and shift as the year goes on and competing priorities pop-up.
2. Step Back and Look More Broadly
This is the step that interrupts the typical goal setting process – and one that will greatly influence our success as an employee and as an HR department. To simplify this step, “helicopter up yo.”
What’s your reason for doing the work? Why are you in HR? Why do you show up every day? What impact do you want to make this year? How can you best serve your customers?Do you ask yourself: Why are you in #HR? Why do you show up every day? How can you best serve your customers? When setting #goals? Click To Tweet
Big questions I know – but it’s important to consider them if you want to truly change the way you show up each day.
This is your “Man in the Mirror” moment.
It’s critical that you consider your true motivation for each question – this isn’t for you to share with others, but will help you connect your goals and performance that match your motivation and drivers.
3. Create Your HR Story Snippet
When considering our company’s broader goals (or even our department’s goals), we’re usually left scratching our heads trying to figure out how what we do in HR, or our employees in their respective departments, actually ties to these concepts, you try to fit our goals into the various buckets or just make up something that doesn’t help us get your job done any faster.
In other words, you don’t give a hoot about the company’s culture initiatives. Not because you don’t care to improve the culture, but because your company isn’t giving you a reason or a way to find meaning and correlation between the work you do, and the success of the company.You don’t give a hoot about the company’s #culture initiatives. Not because you don’t care, but because your company isn’t giving you a reason or a way to find meaning and correlation between the work you do. #HR Click To Tweet
That’s where your HR Story Snippet comes in.
What is your HR Story Snippet?
It’s a simplified version of what is traditionally known as your HR brand that gets your employees engaged and excited about your company… and you excited about working in HR. Your HR Story Snippet will drive your culture (and ultimately engagement).
Your HR Story Snippet contains four parts:
- Who – Your employees
- What – Problem you are solving
- Why – What do they care about
- Result – How do their lives improve
Putting It All Together
From here, you’ll have your role and deliverables clearly defined, your company goals are noted, you understand your own motivation, and you have your personal HR brand (simplified). Alone, these are just steps leading you to a better starting point for your goals.
To tie it all together, in-depth with meaningful and measurable goals.