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  Setting Good Objectives

Setting Good Objectives - SMART Goals

Something a little different for this conversation to keep you on your toes - an article instead of a video.

Please note: there is a workbook challenge at the bottom of this article, so read on!

I want to reinforce the idea of SMART goals by giving some examples of what is, and what isn't a SMART goal and to link that back to finishing your project. Why bother? Well, being able to specifically state what you are going to do and committing to it is such a critical part of finishing your project and achieve the success you are aiming for, that its worth being buttoned up on what will and wont work in our upcoming sections of the course (where I'll be asking you to get more specific and make more commitments).

Remember: SMART = Specific, Measurable, Actionable, Realistic, Timebound.

Example 1:

Not SMART - I'm going to work on my main character this week.

SMART - By Friday I will have a final sketch for my main character that will be the one I use to create my 3D model from.

What changed? - We needed to tighten up specifically what is meant by "work on main character" so that we know when we are finished and whether we hit our target or not. We also needed to be clear on what "this week" meant.

Example 2:

Not SMART - My app will be usable by Monday the 23rd.

SMART - By Monday the 23rd, at least 2 people will have used and understood all of the launch functionality in my app.

What Changed? - Just like when we create user stories (that mention who is going to be using the output of the action), its critical that you are actually doing the thing you think you are doing. If you personally think your app is usable, but you dont put it in the hands of another person, then there truly is no way of knowing if its usable or not.

Example 3:

Not SMART - By Thursday I will have contacted my friend and he will agree to create the art for my main menu.

SMART - By Thursday I will have contacted my friend and asked him to agree to creating the art for my main menu.

What Changed? - Remember in our previous discussions that we can only commit to those things in our control. We can't guarantee that our friend will respond, or agree, only that we will do our very best to ask him to do the particular thing.


Please go to your workbook (in the "WHEN - Removing Roadblocks" section) and add a commitment to the following workbook item:

I am committing to the following SMART Goal (which includes the specific action I’m taking as well as when it will be completed by) in relation to working through and taking actions with this “Finish It” course.

What does this mean? In the next section we will get a lot more specific about your actions for the next week on your Project, so to wrap up this section I'd like you to make a commitment regarding your participation with this Finish It course. For example, how many lectures will you watch this week, or what percentage of the challenges you will complete (all of them I hope!), or by when you will finish this course. 

Please write that SMART goal in your workbook, and then dive in to the next lecture.