SMART criteria

Mnemonic, giving criteria to guide in the setting of objectives / From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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S.M.A.R.T. is a mnemonic acronym, giving criteria to guide in the setting of goals and objectives that are assumed to give better results, for example in project management, employee-performance management and personal development. The term was first proposed by George T. Doran in the November 1981 issue of Management Review.[1] He suggested that goals should be SMART (specific, measurable, assignable, realistic and time-related).

A variant of the SMART model

Since then, other variations of the acronym have been used, a commonly used version includes the alternative words: attainable, relevant, and timely. Additional letters have been added by some authors.[2]

Those who support the use of SMART objectives suggest they provide a clear road map for both the person setting the goal and the person evaluating their progress (e.g. employee and employer, or athlete and coach). The person setting the goal is said to gain a clear understanding of what needs to be delivered and the person evaluating can then assess the outcome based on defined criteria. SMART criteria are commonly associated with Peter Drucker's management by objectives concept.[3]

Often, the terms S.M.A.R.T. Goals and S.M.A.R.T. Objectives are used. Although the acronym SMART generally stays the same, objectives and goals can differ. Goals are the distinct purpose that is to be anticipated from the assignment or project,[4] while objectives, on the other hand, are the determined steps that will direct full completion of the project goals.[4]