For job satisfaction, align company goals with personal targets

How do you feel about the targets set for you by your employer? Are they too high and unattainable or too low?

How do you feel about the targets set for you by your employer? Are they too high and unattainable or too low?

Most employees usually feel that these goals are unrealistically set and are far above their capability. 

How such targets are set still remain a puzzle to many people. Most workers believe they are arbitrarily generated and are well beyond what a company can realistically achieve.

Subsequently, many employees do not share in or feel a sense of ownership or motivation to deliver on these targets that they view as punitive measures to sap their energies or to exploit them.  

Some even blame their seniors for their woes over elusive targets as they fail to qualify for annual bonuses or are reprimanded over dismal performance. 

Workplace targets are usually generated by employers based on the expectation given by their shareholders relating to bottom lines as a return on their investments. Each year, this expectation is raised.

These bottom lines can be broken down into smaller tasks, each with the expected results within a given timeline.

These tasks and their targets are what comprise workplace goals.

Although these are performance measures that are outlined to give the shareholders maximum returns through optimal bottom lines, they can provide an impetus for employees to achieve their personal financial goals.

Where workplace targets are married to personal financial goals, employees usually have the drive to work towards achieving both without fear that they are imposed to frustrate their efforts.

Personal financial goals come top over workplace targets in an employee’s priority list. Workers will be more motivated when they achieve their personal targets than the workplace ones.

That is why when considering a job change, employees often set their eyes on the remuneration than the challenges the work offers.

Likewise, where an employee has no personal financial goals to work towards, he will lack drive and will only focus on achieving the targets to keep his job.

Employees must know that even if they take home fat pay cheques each month from their employers but lack personal financial goals, they can never achieve economic independence or freedom.

Just as their employers set and review terms for them each year employees must also have their own financial goals.

This is where there is correlation between the workplace targets and the personal financial goals. But how can employees marry tthese to achieve better results?

Your personal goals could be investments, savings, assets or even financial networth.

These goals require money.

Since the workplace targets have cash rewards , it is advisable to set your goals high above that set by the company.

For instance, if achieving your employer’s targets can earn you Sh100,000 monthly then it is important to set your personal financial goals high above this figure perhaps at Sh150,000 per month. It is this personal financial target that will act as your reference point.

This financial reward can go into buying a piece of land, securities at the bourse, saving to start a business or even raising capital to develop a residential plot.

It is the amount of money you require to undertake your outlined activity or goal within the set time line that is broken into smaller cash targets, say monthly or weekly. Setting your personal financial targets high above the work place ones ensure that you achieve both.

Sometimes failure to achieve your personal financial target can still place you high above your workplace target which qualify you for other incentives offered by your employer for exemplary performance.

Each time you achieve your personal financial goal, you will be motivated to review your personal targets even before the employer applies the same.

Besides, it will save you from punitive sanctions by your employer thereby giving you some job security.

Employers are beginning to discover the correlation between the workplace targets and the employee’s personal financial goals and have already developed programmes to promote employee’s goals above the workplace targets.

As a result, personal financial goal-setting programmes have been developed in many workplaces as a starting point where employees are educated and guided on how they can set their own financial goals besides the workplace ones and work towards achieving them.

But such programmes need follow up to find out how an employee has performed on his personal targets.

Research has shown that in workplaces where such tailored programs are implemented, employees do not complain of high targets and their performance usually go beyond that set by their employers.

Mr. Opiyo is a personal financial advisor & Coach. Email:


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