With good questions you should be able to achieve a much clearer understanding of the objective, steps and intended outcome.

There are lots of models to help us define outcomes.


S specific

Be specific! There is no use in setting a generic goal because it wont suit you personally, however if you adapt the goal to apply to what you need, then it will be much more valuable to you. Of course you want to prosper in your field of work, but isnt everyone in the office thinking the same?

M measureable

Is it quantifiable? For instance going back to the example objective of selling more, you can measure this by the amount of units sold. Being a measurable goal allows you to identify when exactly it has been reached, i.e. what you desire as the end result.

A achievable

The point of a target is to challenge and motivate yourself to complete a piece of work, if you was to set your target too high it can cause stress and so decreasing the chance of your target actually being within reach. Likewise if a target was too easy will inhibit you from pushing yourself and doing more. Setting yourself a reasonable target is crucial!

R realistic

Im going to own a multimillion pound enterprise by the end of the month Might be a tad too ambitious, dont get me wrong ambition is a leading trait, but maybe start off with something more realistic, remember all successful business people dont just become successful overnight.

T time bound

Deadlines. Not something we like, but something most of us need. Especially if youre someone like me, who tends to procrastinate. For example, if youre sat at your desk knowing you have work to do, its easy to get lost in the world of the internet looking at cute animal photos or funny videos, but what if you were to say Right, by 2 oclock I want to have completed then youve just motivated yourself to complete a job by an allotted time.


There are four key steps in GROW coaching: G-oals, R-eality, O-ptions and W-ill. With a few powerful coaching questions, a leader or coach can quickly raise awareness and responsibility in each area:

G: goals and aspirations

R: current situation, internal and external obstacles

O: possibilities, strengths and resources

W: actions and accountability

The key is to set a Goal which is inspiring and challenging, not just SMART (specific, measurable and achievable in a realistic time frame). Then move flexibly through the other stages, including revisiting the goal if necessary. The final Will element is the barometer of success. It converts the initial desire and intention into successful action.

Exploring and defining the GOAL

  • What would you like to work on?
  • What would you like to have after answering this set of questions (eg, a first step/strategy/solution)?
  • What is your goal related to this issue?
  • When are you going to achieve it?
  • What are the benefits for you in achieving this goal?
  • Who else will benefit and in what way?
  • What will it be like if you achieve your goal?
  • What will you see/hear/feel?
  • Exploring and defining the REALITY
  • What action have you taken so far?
  • What is moving you toward your goal?
  • What is getting in the way?
  • Exploring and defining the OPTIONS
  • What different kind of options do you have to achieve your goal?
  • What else could you do?
  • What are the principal advantages and disadvantages of each option?
  • Exploring and defining the WILL
  • Which options will you choose to act on?
  • When are you going to start each action?
  • How committed are you, on a scale of 110, to taking each of these actions?
  • If it is not a 10, what would make it a 10?

What will you commit to doing? (Note: It is also an option to do nothing and review at a later date.)

The GROW approach promotes confidence and self-motivation, leading to increased productivity and personal satisfaction.


Towards is defined as a focus on achieving goals, while its opposite Away From is defined as a focus on avoiding problems. It is important to know how people are motivated.

Moving away from people want to avoid a certain situation. They dont want to experience loss or discomfort and want to move away from something. They are moving away from pain, motivated by avoiding pain. Moving away from people will focus on telling you what they dont want.

Moving towards people always strive to achieve an outcome they want to move towards something. They focus on what they will get when the outcome is achieved. They are moving towards pleasure, motivated by gaining pleasure. Moving towards people will focus on telling you what they do want.

Pay close attention to the language you are hearing. Generally, for affirmations and future goals the Moving towards is possibly the best way to think about future outcomes.


Both SMART and GROW models include within them an indication of the effort involved. It is important to be clear about the impact on you and others with your goals.

Ecology is important in considering outcomes in order to ensure that the impact of achieving the outcome is positive for the individual and that achieving it is congruent with the overall goals and desired code of conduct of the individual. Also that the impact on others is positive for them.

Doing an ecology check is checking the consequences of your future actions and plans.

In order to do a full ecology check:

  • Think as if you are in the future
  • What are the wider consequences of my action?
  • What will I lose if I make this change?
  • What extra will I have to do?
  • Is it worth it?
  • What will I gain if I make this change?
  • What is the price of making this change and am I willing to pay it?
  • What are the good aspects of the present state?
  • How can I keep those good aspects while making the change that I want?
  • How will my change affect others?
  • Does it go against any of their values?
  • Does this matter?
  • How will they react?


The above (Think as if you are in the future ) focussed questions are useful for us to fully appreciate and anticipate and plan for success. Knowing what does success Look, Smell, Feel, Taste, Sound like helps us look for it, spot it, recognise it, and celebrate it.


With the SMART and/or GROW methods you have a clear understanding of the outcome. With that clarity the daily, weekly, monthly habits and milestones become easy to articulate.Here are the three methods to chunk down goals into steps

Chunk Down Goals by Time

Chunk Down Goals by Quantity

Chunk Down Goals by Actionable Steps

Chunk Down Goals by Time

Many other goals can be chunked down by time, including the following:Manage stress by meditating for 15 minutes a day Master the piano by practicing for 40 minutes a day Get organized by decluttering for 10 minutes a day.

Chunk Down Goals by Quantity

A second method you can use to chunk down goals is by quantity for example reading 50 pagers per day. Writing is something else that can easily be chunked down by setting a quota. Other examples of chunking down a goal by quantity include the following: Learn to draw by doing one drawing a day for a year Learn French by learning 10 words in French a day for 100 days Improve your tennis game by hitting 300 balls every day.

Chunk Down Goals by Actionable Steps

When youre not sure how to achieve a goal, the way to chunk it down is by creating a list of actionable steps. For example, to decorate your home there may be an obvious sequence of things to do starting with building and structural work, electrical and plumbing, paint and decorate and finally furnish.

As noted at the start with good questions you should be able to achieve a much clearer understanding of the objective, steps and intended outcome.