How to Set a Change Goal

My Change Project

Here are instructions for each of the steps to set a change goal for your project. I’ve also provided an example of what each of the steps look like in action from a project I’m working on.


The SMART Project I Want To Complete:

(Specific, Measurable, Action-oriented, Realistic, Time-Based)

First, if you want a successful project completion it’s critical your goal is specific, measurable, action-oriented, realistic and time-based (SMART). Be rigorously honest about testing your project goal against these measurements and edit as needed.

My Example:

New Quixote Consulting website update writing done by December 21.

In the 2016 40-day season I’ve started early, the end of September, because realistically there’s no way I could finish such a big project in just 40 days. When November 11 occurs I may tweak this goal further but for now, this feels pretty SMART for me.


Importance: Why I want this project completed – what I want to get from project completion:

Your project needs to actually have importance to you. The more you realize its’ importance, the more ‘skin’ you have in game.

My Example:

Two primary reasons:

1 – Reflect who I am/who we are NOW

2 – Get more clients

also secondary reasons….

3 – Something to be proud of

4 – Something important in work and life is cleaned up, orderly, neat, tidy

Time of day I’ll be working on my project:

When is your peak energy in each day of the week? That’s ideally the time of day you’ll be working on your project. It’s vital for success to have dedicated time blocked off for working on your project with a minimum of distractions. Even if it can’t be your peak energy time, any blocked off time will help you.

My Example:

M-F 9AM – 12

(and longer if time/energy)

(And being flexible with that time when necessary)


How I’ll know if I haven’t yet worked on my project each day

Life happens and best intentions get buried in minor urgencies. You need a simple physical reminder to get to work on your project each day.

My Example:

I haven’t yet seen the turning leaves of the maple tree. (I’m working on this in October so I can literally see the leaves turn. But in the spirit of the season I have a picture of a maple tree on the cover of the binder I’m using to do my work on the website.)


How I’ll know that I have worked on my project each day

This is the flip side, how do you know when you’re done working on the project?

My Example:

I’m having lunch and I’ve journaled.


Here’s a link to a form you can use to help you with this part of your change project. Directions are on the first page and the form is on the second page.


Explore this idea more fully in Quixote Consulting’s team building and team development activities: 

How To Complete a Project – Teams learn innovative tools to manage a project from start to finish.

40 Days to Change For Good – Don’t just manage change, lead it. Create a successful forty-day blueprint to lead a change that lasts.

How to Lead Change – Learn how to be an effective change leader and lead positive change that lasts.


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