Goal Setting Theory

Goals must to be precise enough to response the, who, what, when, where, why, and how of any opportunities of the goal. Employees achieve better when given particular goals than they do when given inexplicit or nonconcrete goals. The specificity of the goal now deeds as an internal incentive, and the stockroom worker has a specific objective to attain. One public approach is SMART goals. SMART stands for specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and time-bound.

In 1960’s, Edwin Locke proposed the Goal Setting Theory of motivation. This theory defines that goal setting is fundamentally linked to task performance. It states that exact and stimulating goals along with suitable feedback add to higher and better task performance.

In modest words, goals specify and give way to an employee about what needs to be done and how much efforts are required to be put in.

Characteristics of Goal Setting Theory

Some important characteristics of Goal Setting Theory are:

Specific and Clear

Specific and clear goals results in to greater production and better performance. Definite, measurable and clear goals attended by a deadline for completion avoids misunderstanding.

Realistic and Challenging

Goals should be realistic and challenging. This provides an individual a sensation of vanity and triumph when he reaches them, and sets him up for accomplishment of next goal. The more challenging the goal, the greater is the reward generally and the more is the passion for achieving it.


Improved and suitable feedback of outcomes directs the employee behavior and donates to higher presentation than lack of feedback. Feedback is a means of gaining reputation, making explanations and modifiable goal hitches. It helps employees to work with more participation and leads to greater job satisfaction.

Employees Participation

Employees participation in goal is not always needed. Participation of setting goal, however, makes goal more suitable and results to more involvement. Goal setting theory has certain eventualities such as:


Self-efficiency is the individual’s self-confidence and confidence that he has talent of execution the task. Higher the level of self-efficiency, greater will be the energies put in by the individual when they face challenging tasks. While, lower the level of self-efficiency, less will be the efforts put in by the individual or he might even quit while meeting challenges.

Goal Commitment

Goal setting theory accepts that the individual is loyal to the goal and will not leave the goal. The goal obligation is dependent on the following factors:

  • Goals are made open, known and broadcasted.
  • Goals should be set-self by individual rather than designated.
  • Individual’s set goals should be consistent with the organizational goals and vision.

Advantages of Goal Setting Theory

  • Goal setting theory is a practice used to increase motivations for employees to complete work swiftly and effectually.
  • Goal setting leads to better presentation by increasing motivation and efforts, but also through increasing and refining the feedback quality.

Limitations of Goal Setting Theory

  • At times, the organizational goals are in conflict with the managerial goals. Goal conflict has a detrimental effect on the performance if it motivates incompatible action drift.
  • Very difficult and complex goals stimulate riskier behavior.
  • If the employee lacks skills and competencies to perform actions essential for goal, then the goal-setting can fail and lead to undermining of performance.
  • There is no evidence to prove that goal-setting improves job satisfaction.

business research methods

November 13, 2018