Jul 26, 2012

Stretch Goals

Free Inspirational WallpapersHealthy organizations need both stretch and success to stay alive and vibrant, just like a well-balanced diet includes food that is both tasty and healthy. The key to integrating the two is to carve quick wins out of long-term goals — so that each small success is a building block towards achieving a broader challenge.

Regardless of context, there are two keys to the effective use of short-term stretch goals. 

1. The first is to make sure that the immediate goals are part of a larger, more ambitious effort so that whatever is achieved and learned is a building block, not an end-in-itself. In other words, extremely ambitious stretch goals need to be deconstructed into lots of short-term stretch goals, sometimes with multiple cycles.

2. Second, intentionally design the short-term stretch goals in ways that force innovation, collaboration, and learning — so it's not just a matter of working harder for a short period of time. In this way, each short-term success builds capability and knowledge for the next and the next.

Let's not dismiss stretch goals as demotivating or dangerous. If you tackle them by carving out short-term challenges, and learn as you go, they can be a powerful way to accelerate progress.



  1. And another key is not to grow impatient as your building to your stretch goals are being achieved.

  2. Okay, that is a stretch.... But important!


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