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When you set goals with/for direct reports, what is the biggest challenge?

Link to the research report

About this survey:

Survey question: When you set goals with/for direct reports, what is the biggest challenge?

Survey period: November - December 2022

Notes on data:

Among those surveyed, 31.5% report that organization goals don’t clearly relate to individual employees, and 35% said it’s hard to design a goal and break it down into relevant actions.

Both of these responses have key themes of vision and understanding. 

The numbers show a gap between employees and their leadership, particularly an employee’s understanding of how their role ties into the greater organizational goals. 

Employees must understand the impact and importance of their roles and actions within the company. Organizations that involve employees in decision-making, invite them into conversations and keep them updated on company direction are more productive and better understand how their roles align with organizational vision.

The best companies to work for engage and retain their talent. Highly engaged employees mean higher productivity, increased morale, lower turnover, and better business results. Key initiatives and practices lead to these levels of employee engagement, starting with how an employee understands their work and their role in the organization.

How can an individual work toward their goal if they can’t break them into actions? This requires managers and leaders to have an authentic dialogue with employees. Leaders must seek to understand employee experiences and use those insights to drive more meaningful conversations on how goals, roles, and departments are all a foundation for company success.

Organizations run into issues when leadership and staff misunderstand what work needs to be done, and these challenges impact not only individual performance but also company performance.

When employees are invited to understand an organization's strategies and leaders have authentic conversations, they gain a deeper professional and personal experience in the company’s overall success. Leaders and managers that expand company dialogue and explain how employees are key to company growth can tap into increased productivity because these employees understand how their work and efforts tie into the company’s future.

Actively engaging employees with company goals and breaking them down with authentic dialogue and intention gives them a better perspective in how day-to-day operations lead to a company’s success.

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