How Effective is your Goal Setting

How Good is Your Goal Setting?

Are you Meeting Your Goals, or Missing out?

Set effective goals.

Be your personal best.

© iStockphoto/CEFutcher

Think back to a time when you set yourself a goal but didn't achieve it. Perhaps you planned to get fitter, or learn a new language.

You probably felt frustrated when you realized that you'd failed. But did you reflect on what went wrong, and think about how you could improve next time?

If you repeatedly miss the targets that you've set yourself at work, you may find that your career begins to stall. For example, if you keep failing to develop new skills, other team members might get promoted ahead of you. And if you become known as someone who sets goals but doesn't achieve them, this can affect your professional reputation.

Take our short quiz to explore your goal-setting approach, and to learn about some of the obstacles that can get in your way. Then, follow our tips to give yourself the best chance of fulfilling your ambitions.

How Good is Your Goal Setting?


Answer the following statements as you actually are (rather than as you think you should be!) When you've finished, click the "Calculate My Total" button to get your score. Then, use the tips that follow the quiz to improve your goal-setting skills.

18 Statements to Answer

Not at All Rarely Sometimes Often Very Often
1I set lots of goals in the hope that I will achieve some of them.
2I find that my targets are too ambitious.
3If I'm struggling to meet a goal, I set sub-goals to renew my motivation.
4I don't celebrate success until I've achieved a goal.
5I tie my work-related objectives to personal ambitions.
6I set low standards so that my goals are easy to meet.
7I don't ask for support from friends and colleagues if I become demotivated.
8I celebrate my success when I hit my targets, and I thank the people who helped me.
9I think about what my boss or family wants me to achieve when I set personal goals.
10I regularly monitor how I am doing, so that I can measure how well I'm progressing towards my goals.
11My personal values aren't relevant to my work-related objectives.
12I don't set an end date for achieving my goals, so that I give myself plenty of time.
13I seek out tools that help me reach my goals.
14When I make new plans, I reflect on my existing commitments to make sure that I don't take on too much.
15If I fail to meet a target, I move on without reflecting on what went wrong.
16I look for ways to build goals into my daily life by developing new habits.
17I get excited by new ideas and I flit from goal to goal without achieving anything.