What Is a Goal?
The children’s book Alice in Wonderland can give us some insight into the purpose of goals. When Alice asks the Cheshire cat for some help in deciding which route to take, the cat asks where she would like to go. Not an unreasonable question. Alice says she doesn’t know, and the cat points out that, in that case, it doesn’t really matter which route they take. And so it goes with strategic planning. Without a goal, how can you possibly determine how to get where you’d like to go? And that, in essence, defines what a goal is—it is simply a statement of where you’re like to go, the end point that will be your measure of success. A goal can be thought of as a desired end state.
Goals are general statements that describe ...