What Becomes a Goal

Example

You work for a company that manufactures running shoes. Compared to figures from a year ago, profits and sales are slumping. You are asked to come up with a solution that will increase both. While brainstorming, you come up with three possible solutions:

a. start a major marketing campaign b. limit the availability of the product/service

When you are brainstorming, you come up with various possible solutions to a problem. But which one is worth pursuing? Goal setting is about choosing the best solution and creating a plan to make it happen. To do this, you need to clearly define your goal. What is it, exactly, that you wish for an outcome? Since every possible solution is different (by varying degrees) it can lead to different outcomes. Evaluate the ideas you came up with during brainstorming based on the specific criteria you set for your goal.

to increase demand c. lower costs so that profit margins are increased

Let's look at each of these possible solutions and their probable outcomes. A large marketing campaign would most likely increase sales. Limiting the availability to increase demand would eventually lead to higher prices and greater profits, with a possible increase in sales. But lowering costs would most likely result in increasing sales and is a better way to increase both sales and profit. Therefore, it makes sense, once you have evaluated your possible solutions in terms of possible outcomes, to choose solution c.

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