Why it’s smart to set realistic and achievable goals

So you’re almost at the finish line – the end of another busy school year. You’ve worked incredibly hard, but might feel like you haven’t really got anywhere.

As a school marketer, it can feel like you’re on a treadmill from the next event, to the next publication, to the next story or post.

The extended break from the school calendar is the perfect time to reassess your marketing objectives and consider working ‘smarter’ towards long-term goals.

The acronym SMART was coined by George Doran in the early 1980s as a guide for management to setting goals and objectives.

Applying SMART goals to your marketing objectives can help you clarify your ideas, focus your efforts, and use your time and resources more productively.

Here are some tips on why it’s ‘smart’ to set realistic and achievable goals:

Be precise. Start by writing your goals down to help give you clarity on what it is you are trying to achieve. Focus on one goal at a time to help maximise your efficiency.

You need to be able to measure your success, which is why it is important to make your goal specific. This means asking quantitative or qualitative questions, such as How much? How many? How will I know when it is accomplished?

Know your limitations. Are you attempting too much? Work towards goals that are challenging but not impossible, as unrealistic goal-setting can be demotivating – not only to yourself but others around you.

Be honest with yourself. Do you have the resources to make it happen? Time, money, manpower; these are all factors to consider. At the end of the day, you know what you and your team are capable of.

Create a timeline and set a deadline. When will you achieve your goal? Include dates for monitoring your progress, which may include adjusting the timeline if necessary. When your goal is tangible you’ll have a better chance of achieving it.

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