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Goals for performance reviews: examples and best practice

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Explore goals for performance reviews examples, best practice and guidance. Learn how to structure goal setting with OKRs and drive outcomes.

Have you ever been set a goal for your performance review, without really knowing how you’re going to achieve it? We probably all have at some point in our lives, and when it happens, it can go one of two ways: you can lose track, or you can bring new structure, purpose, and best practice to your objective.

When you know what you are working towards, the goal is so much easier to reach. That is why it is so essential to make performance review goals, as well as all goals and objectives at every step of your organization, as transparent and structured as possible. 

To help, we’re sharing best practices and examples of performance review goals, to give you a clear strategy to succeed with goal setting and management.

How to succeed with goals and objectives

By introducing OKRs, you set Objectives, which lead to where you want to go. The Key Results are the means of transportation that take you there. 

To make sure you succeed with your goals, you have to make your company’s OKR’s a clear foundation that each department can base their own OKR’s from. That way you tailor your OKR’s so each department can work towards milestones of their own. 

From a company perspective, transparency is key. Create an Objective that you can use in everyday life. Be ambitious! The goal doesn’t necessarily have to be reached; it should be something to work towards. The Key Results should be something that helps measure in which way you are approaching the Objective. For more, check out our OKRs guide to help you get started.

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Example: How Google adopted OKRs and Goal Setting

Google is an excellent example of ambitious goals for performance reviews and company objectives. Their first Objective using the OKR framework was short and simple: Create the world’s best browser!  Simple in wording, but hard to do. 

The Objective was measured over three years. The first year the Key Result was to get 20 million weekly active users by year’s end. At the end of the year, Google had 10 million weekly active users. 

The year after Google set a Key Result of 50 million users and didn’t reach it once again. They did, however, reach 38 million. In the third year, they set the bar higher. This year they wanted to reach 111 million users. They set strategies in place and created brand awareness. By the end of 2010, they reached their goal of 111 million users. 

An absolute success! But even in the years where Google didn’t reach their goals, they still had an increase in users by more than 250 percent from year one to two. Not bad! Throughout the years, they provided goals to work towards and something to fight for. 

Goals for performance reviews: examples

Of course, the tricky part is turning strategic business goals into practical goals for performance reviews at the individual level. To get you started, here are some goals for performance review examples you can use:

Improve Productivity and Efficiency. Goal: Increase productivity by 15% over the next year. Implement time management techniques and streamline processes to achieve higher output.

Enhance Communication Skills. Goal: Improve communication skills to reduce misunderstandings. Attend communication workshops and practice active listening with team members.

Increase Sales and Revenue. Goal: Achieve a 20% increase in sales revenue in the next quarter. Example: Develop a more effective sales strategy and expand the customer base.

Develop Leadership Skills. Goal: Prepare for a leadership role within the next two years. Take on a mentorship role and lead cross-functional projects to gain leadership skills and experience.

Best practices for setting performance review goals

1. Goal setting starts with your C-level team

To succeed with goals for performance reviews and OKR setting, it’s important to have the CEO, managers and employees on board. It isn’t enough to have an ambitious company Objective if it isn’t communicated and carried through.

Every team at Google had to know what they were working towards; if not, they probably wouldn’t have reached the results they needed or wanted. 

2. Make OKRs practical for your managers

Managers have to create OKR’s for their department, so there is clear synergy to the main Objective and Key Results of the company. OKR management for a department can also run for a shorter period than the overall company’s main Objective and Key Results. This way, there is a possibility to reflect on what works and what doesn’t.

Since 1:1s and performance reviews are already a great way to checking in with an employee to align on their wishes and individual goals, it can also be a great opportunity to utilize OKR’s as a tool to move forward in the employees evolution. 

3. Collaborate on goals and objectives with your employees

For employees, and in general, it’s important to remember to check if the Key Results achieved lead to overall accomplishment of the Objective. If they don’t, the Objective or the Key Results have to be changed so they fit the Company OKR’s.

It can be challenging to see the higher purpose of every task in a workday, but if the individual OKR’s are visible and actively used by the employee, it’s easier to remember. It may seem simple, but it provides higher engagement and drive to know which direction you are moving. 

Set strategic goals and objectives with eloomi

Goals for performance reviews are essential to help businesses and individuals grow. But they aren’t always easy to plan, communicate, and track. An OKR framework for goal setting can help you create achievable, measurable goals that show value across your organization.

If you’d like to see how you can make goals and objectives practical at a company, manager, and employee level, book a call with us today and put your performance management goals into practice.

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