If you want to win in business, you need to be amazing at goals.

Setting goals.

Achieving goals.

If you’re lucky, occasionally sailing past your goals with flying colors.

The discipline of setting and achieving goals will help you run a very good company.

But if you want to grow—quickly—I’d suggest you need something else.

Smarter goals.

Here’s how you get them.

Taking SMART Goals Further

You’re probably already familiar with SMART goal-setting as a methodology.

If not, here’s a quick refresher. The concept is fairly simple.

SMART is an acronym:

– Specific (written down, well-defined)

M – Measurable (can be assessed in some objective way)

A – Assignable (can be owned by one individual)

R – Realistic (can be accomplished with the given resources and capacity)

T – Time-related (needs to be done by a certain date)

Note: there are many variations on what the letters stand for out there; these are what my research indicates are the original words in the acronym.

If you make your goals specific, measurable, assignable, realistic, and time-related, you will set strong goals. And if you work hard and are disciplined about execution, you will achieve them.

But if you’re missing one critical ingredient, all the goals in the world won’t help you grow.


That’s right. Your goals can be SMART as hell, but are they actually helping you build the business you want? Move toward your vision of the future? Create a company that can scale?

If not…and I hate to say this, because I do love and respect people who can get things done…you’re just really, really good at checking boxes.

That’s the power of a vision that forces you to look 3 years into the future, then plan accordingly.

And that’s the power of a goal-setting system like OKRs (Objectives and Key Results), which inextricably links your goals to your vision. 

Every goal you set in your organization must be relevant to where you want to go. 

Yes, sometimes there are things you must accomplish to lay the groundwork for those bigger objectives that clearly connect to your vision. But you must be able to see the link, or it isn’t worth doing.

Let me say it another way. 

I love sailing. You can get really, really good at the mechanics of sailing. 

But if you don’t have an end destination, you’ll be a very good sailor who can’t actually get anywhere.

SMART is good. But I want your goals to be better than SMART. SMART-R, perhaps? 🙂

Focus on what’s relevant. Then get really good at getting it done.

P.S. This connection between vision and execution is one of the things that sets our Growth system apart from the rest. If you want to learn more, contact us to speak with one of our consultants