Tag Archives: Goal Setting

DropTask’s guide to a prosperous 2018

To successfully kick off a productive new year, it’s important to set aside time to reflect on what we want to achieve and how we want to get there. Remember those goals from last year? Did you get all of the stuff done that you wanted to? Or, did you spend the first six months of the year struggling with priorities, unable to track progress and falling behind?

Dreaming up goals without efficient deadlines, zero urgency or forgetting to invite colleagues to lend a hand along the way will result in a lack of real progress. Make this year one to remember by ticking off those all important milestones and reaching your longstanding goals.

Use task management app DropTask to power up your productivity for the whole of this year. Take a look at our guide to a productive and prosperous 2018 below. Plus, get your hands on 1 year free of DropTask for Business in our exclusive offer.*

Don’t waste crucial time

As the saying goes, ‘new year, new start’. What better way to get started on your New Year’s resolutions than at the very beginning of January? Jot down your goals in a safe place like DropTask. Use the app’s blank Canvas to arrange your goals into corresponding Categories that help link similar themes with one another. By segmenting your goals into different categories, they’ll be grouped together and will look a lot less daunting to start on.

With your goals laid out in front of you, assign Start and Due Dates to them. Assign dates based on priorities and balance your workload throughout the year. Plus, when dates are fixed, they’ll be automatically scheduled in your Calendar to ensure that no goal is forgotten.

Target where your effort is going to

We all feel fired-up to get to work on our goals and resolutions at the start of the year. But, by the time February comes around, we can lose motivation and feel overwhelmed by the tasks ahead of us. Make sure you maintain motivation by working efficiently with colleagues. Ask for a helping hand by Assigning Tasks to individuals who have strengths in those areas. Delegating effectively allows you to target your energy and effort more efficiently. Work together to reach your goals faster and share a sense of achievement when you get there.

And if you’re looking for ways to give your team a little boost of motivation, use the Comments and Messaging feature to drop a colleague a thank you message to show that you’re grateful for their commitment.

Keep on track throughout the year

As you’re making progress on your goals, it’s vital that you have a clear view of everything that you’ve accomplished so far. Keep track each step of the way by updating the Progress Percentage Bar. A simple slide of the progress percentage bar will provide you with an at-a-glance understanding of what’s making progress and what needs more focus. Plus, this will act as a motivator as it clearly indicates the percentage that you’ve got left to go.

When you’ve finished working and are ready to celebrate your achievements, click the ‘tick’ button to transport your goal into the Completed Tasks View. This view is a great way to scan through your accomplishments. Arrange by day, week or month, and get an instant boost of motivation as it shows you how far you’ve come. You are sure to feel encouraged to continue smashing your remaining goals for 2018.

Achieve your goals today. Sign up to task management app DropTask for free.

What resolutions do you have for the new year? Let us know in the comments, we’d love to hear them.

What would you like to achieve next year?

With 2017 coming to a steady close, now is usually the time when we think about what we’ve achieved and what we didn’t throughout the past twelve months. Did you hit that end of year sales target? Did you finally get that long-awaited promotion? If the answer is no, then now is the time to think of the reasons why. Was it a case of, “I’ll start tomorrow”? Or, simply a fear of failure? Whatever the reason, DropTask can help to not make this a repeat occurrence.

For our last blog of 2017, we’ve rounded up our top 3 tips for how to step into 2018 with a positive and can-do attitude, to ensure that your goals stay your priority for the coming year. Take a look below to see how DropTask can help you achieve your goals early and make 2018 a year to remember.

Ask yourself what’s important? Then get to work

What would you like to achieve this year? Pour all of your goals and aspirations for the new year onto the interactive Canvas. We recommend starting a new, blank project to ensure that your goals are placed within a personal project. Title the project ‘My Goals for 2018’. This will allow you to solely focus on your tasks for the upcoming year, and keep all important information in one place.

When your goals have been added to the Canvas, group them together by using Categories and Assign yourself to them. That way you’ll create clear definition and hierarchy within your project, while at the same time knowing exactly what your main priorities are for the new year. Did you know that when you have a physical record of your goals, you’re more likely to achieve them? Dr. Gail Matthews, a psychology professor at the Dominican University California, studied the science behind goal setting. Matthews’ studies found that individuals are significantly more committed to reaching their goals when they’re recorded.

Create small milestones and start ticking them off

So, now that all of your goals have been turned into actionable tasks on the Canvas, it’s time to start breaking them down. The majority of your goals will be long-term endeavours. With this in mind, use Checklists to break each goal down into smaller milestones that you can start working towards. For example, a goal of yours may be called ‘Promotion’. Within this goal, checklist items may be ‘Complete employee handbook’, ‘Secure an excellent review’, and so on. Smaller milestones will help you to stay on track with your end goal.

Once you’ve started to make progress towards achieving your goal, use the Progress Percentage Bar to mark how far you’ve come. The visual indicator is shown on the outside of the task circle and will help you to view progress at a single glance, encouraging you to push forward to the next stage of your goal.

Keep yourself motivated to reach that end goal

We’ve all experienced that feeling of not having enough energy to see our goal through to the very end. In 2018, let’s make this a thing of the past. If you feel as though you’re not making progress, be sure to assign Due Dates to your goals. Believe it or not, having clear and tight deadlines encourage us to work harder by adding a little more urgency to tasks that we need to complete.

If you’re worried about your schedule for the new year, or any unexpected tasks that may pop-up, there’s no need to stress. DropTask’s built-in Calendar ensures that all tasks across all projects are prioritized in accordance to their start or due date. With deadlines assigned to your goal, you’ll be more motivated than ever to work towards deadlines, rather than letting them slip through the cracks like previous years.

With DropTask, you’ll have everything that you need to achieve your goals in the #NewYear. Do you have any goals that you have lined up for 2018? Let us know in the comments below!

Setting SMART work goals for the new year

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With 2017 just around the corner, our thoughts turn to our aspirations and goals for the coming year. For many of us, this involves making New Year’s resolutions for what we want to accomplish professionally. But while we may kick off the year with good intentions, the hard truth is most New Year’s resolutions don’t live long enough to see February. According to the Statistic Brain Research Institute, only 8% of people that set New Year’s goals go on to actually achieve them!

There’s a good reason for that, and it’s not just about lack of willpower or motivation. Often resolutions are simply too vague, over ambitious, irrelevant or not feasible enough to work. To avoid new year failure in the workplace, try making SMART resolutions for your career instead. Like SMART goals, these are Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Timely. What’s cool about this clever approach is that it transforms wishy washy New Year’s resolutions into powerful objectives that can be boldly actioned, helping you work smarter rather than harder.

What are you waiting for? Get ready for the new year with these SMART steps.

1. Make your work goal specific

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The first step in SMART goal setting is to define your goal with enough detail to make it crystal clear what you want to accomplish. Generalized goals such as “get more clients”, “write a book” or “find a new job” aren’t great for getting results because they don’t provide sufficient direction or motivation, and can be awkward to measure. By adding more clarity to each of these statements, we can narrow down exactly what we want to achieve:

  • Obtain three high-spend ($50,000+) corporate clients
  • Write a 60,000 word small business guide
  • Land a marketing position at xyz company

It’s simple but it works. Research by Edwin Locke and Gary Latham found that setting specific and challenging goals led to higher performance in 90% of cases.

To make your goal more specific, think about the who, what, when, where and why involved in making it a reality. DropTask users will know how easy it is to turn goals into actionable tasks, complete with added notes, files, sub-tasks and priority settings. You can even create an entire Project dedicated to your goals, which can act as a visual, clutter-free hub for all your goal setting and tracking activity.

2. Make your work goal measurable

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How will you know if your goal has been reached? Add precise targets, metrics or best practice standards so you can measure your degree of success. Try to use numerical values where possible as they’re more clear-cut. Things like sales volume/profit, units of production, word counts, costs to be reduced, budgets to work within, number of customers, clients to be contacted, time taken or ratios. For your email marketing, key goals might include “increase new subscribers by x%” and “increase conversion rate by x%”. If you publish regularly on a blog, you might set measures to write at least 2 blog posts and research 5 new post ideas every week. Is your goal too soft to evaluate in a quantifiable way? Then create a list of behavioural standards or observations to check progress, such as correct procedures to follow for dealing with customer complaints. Whatever the nature of your goal, making it measurable is a great motivator and helps you easily review how you’re getting on. At regular intervals, set aside 5 minutes to assess your progress using our Task Status feature – mark off the measures you’ve completed and re-plan or re-prioritize around your upcoming tasks.

3. Make your work goal attainable

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Setting goals is one thing, making sure you can achieve them is another. Facing a big mountain of a goal can be daunting – you’ll have little hope in reaching the top and risk losing confidence in your abilities. On the flip side, you shouldn’t set goals that are too easy either. Look to ‘raise the bar’ and go beyond your current level of achievement with goals that stretch your abilities. There’s a greater chance of hitting a larger goal when you build on it ‘bit by bit’ rather than through huge leaps. So, our advice is to start small. If customer satisfaction levels are low, aiming for a 10% improvement right away may be far too big an expectation. Aim for 5% instead, and once you’re there, look at increasing the challenge to take you closer to that 10%. Examine your own goal. If it’s looking a bit hairy, break it into smaller milestones so you don’t get overwhelmed. This is easily done using DropTask’s Checklist which allows you to add any number of sub-tasks to a bigger task. These can be completed and checked off individually, clearly showing progress. Repeating tasks can also come in useful for reminding you to stay on top of any recurring activities in your action plan.

4. Make your work goal relevant

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Are your work goals being set for the right reasons? Don’t set certain goals just because you think you should, otherwise you won’t be as passionate or committed to achieving them. Make sure that each goal is relevant to your overall vision for your career or to furthering the mission of the company. Ask yourself: Does this goal fit into the bigger picture? Is it worthwhile? When you have a sexy goal that’s relevant to your future, you’ll be far less likely to toss in the towel when any obstacles crop up along the way. Think about how you can align all your lower-level, short-term goals so that they advance the pursuit of your higher-level, long-term goals and you’ll be sure to stay on the right path. In DropTask, use Task Dependencies to visually display and maintain the structure of your goals as you move closer and closer to your achieving your ambitions.

5. Make your work goal timely

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Every work goal should be time-bound in some way, either with a deadline for completion, time scales for key milestones or a frequency cycle. Deadlines add a sense of urgency to a goal, bringing quicker achievement, and are the final anchor in making your goal real and tangible. Pick a sensible time frame to allow yourself some leeway for the unexpected, while still prompting you to press ahead. Quarterly deadlines can be quite manageable for most work projects, and prevent goals drifting: “I will reduce monthly expenses by 10% within 3 months.” Or set dates for key achievements along the route to a major goal, such as deadlines for the planning, development and implementation of a new IT system, and then further time frames for testing the system and training the team to use and understand it. Our in-built Calendar allows you to plan your work goals by Start and Due Date, so you can get started, maintain momentum and achieve all you set out to do, right on time.  With Team Calendars you have the ability to share your calendar with others, so you can garner support from your colleagues to help you stick to your goals. And they’ll be there to celebrate with you when you reach the finish line!

We would love to hear about your SMART work goals, so please leave a comment below. What other goal methods do you like to use? Happy goal setting for the new year!