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Chapter 3. Laying the Foundation for Tea... > Setting the Team's Goals - Pg. 26

Laying the Foundation for Team Success 26 Setting the Team's Goals As noted in the last chapter, setting goals and working to achieve them is basic to the success of any enterprise, and teams are no exception. The team may set long-term goals to carry out its mission and short-term goals for specific projects. Team goals must be congruent with the goals of the department the team is part of, and of the overall organization. The Components of a Good Team Goal The team's mission or long-term goal is usually broad. It expresses the overall purpose of the team, such as "developing marketing plans," "improving quality," or "reducing workplace accidents." Long-term goals keep the team focused on its main purposes and enable the members to concen- trate their efforts and not digress into other areas. While a team may set its long-term goals just once, it must frequently set project or short-term goals. A good team goal has several components: · Purpose of the project:What is the nature of the assignment? For example: to develop a pro- gram to increase the number of sites for placing automated-teller machines. · Source:To whom will the finished report be submitted? For example: This project was ordered by the new product marketing manager. · Performance standards:How will we know we're successful? For example: This project will have been satisfactorily completed when we have provided a marketing plan, an implementation plan, and a control system. · Timetable:When must each phase be completed? For example: Phase 1 research, completed July 22; report completed August 15; Phase 2, research completed September 12; report com- pleted October 10. Collaborative Goal Setting If, as the old expression goes, "Two heads are better than one," then ten heads are a lot better than two. When a team is involved in setting goals, suggestions and ideas come from all team members. Not only are more suggestions generated, the interaction of the group increases the quantity and quality of these ideas significantly. Team Builder Before you can set a goal, you must have a vision--the ideal that you wish to achieve. A perfect example of a well-stated vision was President Kennedy's pronouncement: "We will put a man on the moon in this decade." Some other advantages of having the team collaborate in goal setting are · By encouraging members to participate, it gives each member the opportunity for personal learning and growth. · Members have a clear sense of what is expected.