What are goals


What types of goals are there?

Not only the company as a whole but also parts of the company, areas, departments, projects, developments and also employees pursue goals. There are numerous ways and ways to tell them apart:

  • Monetary and non-monetary or quantitative and qualitative goals
    Monetary goals are also referred to as quantitative or performance goals, as the respective performance can be clearly defined and measured, e.g. increasing profits (by x percent), increasing the return on sales (to y percent) or improving liquidity (to e.g. Monetary units).
    Non-monetary or qualitative goals can be, for example, increasing customer satisfaction, improving the image or increasing employee satisfaction.
    It is interesting that the primarily non-monetary endeavors can also have a monetary influence: if employee satisfaction rises, the sickness rate among employees falls, the image improves, and customers prefer to buy the company's products more often. This perspective means that, despite the formulation of ecological or social demands, companies often have to put up with the accusation that in the end they are only concerned with economic issues.
  • Complementary, Competing, and Indifferent Goals
    This type is about the interaction of the goals with one another: do they complement one another (increase employee satisfaction, reduce sickness rate and employee turnover), hinder one another (inexpensive production abroad and lower transport costs) or do they have no influence on one another.
    Competing efforts are not uncommon in day-to-day business, especially since different internal areas, departments or even individual employees are in competition. Therefore, companies should also identify and analyze conflicting goals in the course of stakeholder management with their motives and attitudes, and communicate with them on a regular basis.
  • Main and secondary or main and sub-goals
    Main goals are more important compared to secondary goals, so organizations primarily try to achieve them. Sub-goals are in a logical, hierarchical relationship to overall goals and help to achieve them.
    It is important for organizations to reconcile the goals of those affected. Target diagrams are available for visualization, which are often also used to represent target hierarchies.
  • Strategic and operational or long-term, medium-term and short-term goals
    Short-term goals have a time horizon of approx. 1 year, medium-term goals from 3 to 5 years and long-term goals from 5 to 10 years. The short-term goals are also seen as operational (e.g. the relaunch of a website) and the long-term as strategic goals (conversion of drive technology in automobile production from gasoline and diesel to electric vehicles).

In the practice of companies there is often a mixture of the different types: A short-term, operational goal can be a main monetary goal that fights with another for internal resources and financial means. An operational, non-monetary goal can be a sub-goal that works in the direction of a monetary and strategic overall goal.

In addition to the types mentioned, there are also behavioral goals in organizations, for example, which are aimed at cooperation within the company and / or behavior towards customers, partners or competitors. In response to questions about improved internal collaboration, there are often regular retrospectives, the definition of sprint goals, the use of good practices or the documentation of lessons learned.