How to set short term work goals to boost your productivity

Everyone seems to want something better out of their work and career. Promotion, better sales, increased production, or anything else — there is much to be desired. However, trying to achieve any of these without a clear plan of action may be like leaping into the sky. On the other hand, setting immediate and actionable goals establishes a roadmap for work and career success. 

Read on to get the gist of short term work goals and how you can implement and realize them in your work. 

What are short term work goals?

Short term goals at work are the small, immediate steps taken to realize an overall objective in the long run. They spell out the tasks that should be done at each moment. They also set the ball rolling for larger, longer-term goals that may initially seem daunting.

There is no standard timeframe for working on short term goals. They can span from a day to a moment within the next few years.

Why are short term goals for work important?

Short term goals set the pace for improvements at work. Think of a career trajectory as a staircase. As each short term work goal is realized, the individual takes a step closer to the peak where they need to be. Short-term goals provide indices for growth and professional development.

Short term goals are often pieces of larger goals, but not always. Either way, they provide a useful roadmap for growing and developing in an individual's line of work. Short term goals for work help individuals and organizations to:

  • Define expectation

Everyone is looking for the next big thing at their place of work. However, this can mean different things to different people. Setting professional short term goals can help to draw the line between wishful thinking and reality and commit to a plan of action that can deliver the expected results in the shortest possible time.

  • Set priorities

While much is needed, time and other resources are very limited. Therefore, it is very important to sift out the really important things, not merely urgent, and give them due attention. When you set short term work goals, you can narrow your efforts to doing the necessary tasks to achieve your goals within the set timeframe.

  • Track and analyze progress

Good short term goals provide a template to keep track of your progress. Where short term goals form a part of a larger supervening goal, you can measure how much ground has been covered and how much remains to be covered. Even when these short term goals stand alone, they provide checkboxes that you can tick as you journey toward self improvement.

What types of short term goals for work exist?

Short term goals for work can be set under either of these four major categories:

  • Personal short term goals 

These are usually based on one or more aspects of self improvement. It could be to read a new book every month, cut down on calories, attain a political or social position, make a certain amount of money, etc. Personal short term goals require a great deal of personal responsibility and accountability. It is better, however, to have a mentor or partner supervise your progress. 

  • Business short term goals 

These goals might be personal if the business is a sole proprietorship or corporate if it is a partnership or corporation. Either way, these goals help business owners achieve a particular outcome, like increasing market reach or buying new equipment.

Short term goals for business can include:

  • Production goals: Business owners often set targets to optimize their production processes and thus increase the rate at which goods and services are produced.

  • Revenue goals:  Since profit making is the lifeblood of every sustainable business, setting revenue goals helps businesses stay in business. With more income, businesses can expand and scale, employ more workers and reach more customers.

  • Corporate social responsibility goals: A good reputation is a powerful tool for a business to stay on top of the market. By setting goals that involve certain community projects, businesses can place themselves firmly in the goodwill of the target market.

  • Publicity goals: New businesses may primarily aim to reach wider audiences and establish a presence within a particular region. An example of a publicity goal would be to increase the company's social media following by 50% within six months.

  • Professional short term goals

These are usually career-based goals set by workers who desire a measurable degree of success at their job, like a promotion, contract, salary raise, connections, or anything else. Professionals like lawyers who work for large corporations set these goals to stay relevant and prominent in their practice.

  • Corporate or team short term goals

These are usually part of an overall strategy for an organization to achieve a particular result. Corporate short-term goals require the participation of teams and a great deal of communication and collaboration. You can deploy automated tools like Workee for video conferencing and collaboration. While there are so many conferencing and collaboration tools, you benefit more from Workee because it offers other business management features that will enable you to build and scale faster.

How to define short-term goals for work

If short-term goals for work are not set properly, they may sound beautiful and lofty, but it may not be easy to take action on them. The SMART technique was developed to help people create workable procedures and timeframes for accomplishing goals. Smart goals are:

  • Specific

SMART goals must contain a clearly defined objective, not just vague ideas. For instance, a company, instead of setting an overall goal to increase revenue, should specify how much they wish to make in a fiscal year, say, $36,000. Having a figure in mind makes it easier to identify the steps to take, month after month, to realize the given goal at the end of the year.

  • Measurable

Measurable goals provide an objective method for individuals to score their progress toward attaining set goals. Goals must be measured against a certain metric, usually time and figures. Using our previous scenario, the goal of making a $36,000 profit can be measured monthly. If the business can pull in about $3,000 every month, they are well on track to achieving its goal within the set timeframe.

This idea is known as OKRs, or objectives and key results, where the objective is the overall goal to be attained, and the key results are the metrics for measuring progress.

  • Achievable

Achievable goals do not mean that the goals must be easy to attain. They mean that with the right amount of effort and consistency, the goals can be attained. Bogus goals can lead to a fruitless expenditure of time and resources. In setting goals, one must consider the availability of resources and the given timeframe. Achievable goals work with what is realistic, given the existing factors, not including luck or probability. Even where the goal is a stretch goal, set intentionally to spur you beyond what is comfortable, it must still be within the realm of possibility, or the goal becomes futile.

  • Relevant

Every goal must be aimed at achieving a particular useful purpose. In other words, the set goal must be relevant in the larger scheme. For example, a company seeks to increase the number of followers on its Instagram page by 35%. This must not be merely for its own sake but must be useful in driving sales, or at least traffic, through the platform. For companies that offer location-based services, however, growing a social media following might not be as relevant a goal as holding physical campaigns within the vicinity to increase awareness among locals.

  • Time-bound

A goal without a timeframe is a mere pipe dream and may never be attained. Deadlines hasten the process of reaching a goal by inducing you to action. Workee helps you keep pace with your goals by providing timely reminders so you don't sleep on those tasks.

Setting SMART goals may require a little extra effort, but it is worth the energy. The technique helps to simplify the journey by determining the action point at every stage. These small landmarks gradually bring you across the map to your goals. 


Setting short-term work goals are important for achieving success in the workplace. They provide employees with a clear direction and focus and can help increase productivity and motivation. It is essential to set specific, measurable, and achievable goals that align with the organization's overall objectives. Additionally, regular check-ins and progress updates can help ensure that goals are on track and that necessary adjustments can be made. By understanding the importance of short-term work goals and implementing them effectively, individuals and organizations can achieve success and reach their full potential.

And remember, always use Workee to optimize your work processes. It won't just simplify your work processes but boost your work efficiency. Sign up on Workee today and set up your free, no-code website in minutes.

Ihor, CEO at Workee

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