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Article
Publication date: 1 June 1987

Edna M. White and Benito Flores

This paper addresses the importance of goal setting in the operations function. The importance of goal setting and its possible role in the implementation and operation of…

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2059

Abstract

This paper addresses the importance of goal setting in the operations function. The importance of goal setting and its possible role in the implementation and operation of production systems is considered with particular emphasis on Material Requirements Planning (MRP). It has been argued that an operative goal setting process can improve employees' performance in any area of the organisation. Likewise, companies with a high‐level MRP system are expected to show high performance levels. This paper offers empirical support for these claims and further argues that the combination and interaction of the two processes results in synergistic effects. To support these arguments the paper draws on both theoretical studies and the results of a small regional survey.

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International Journal of Operations & Production Management, vol. 7 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-3577

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Article
Publication date: 12 April 2011

Tanja Bipp and Ad Kleingeld

The purpose of this study was to investigate how individual perceptions by employees of a goalsetting program and personality traits influence job satisfaction and goal

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19689

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study was to investigate how individual perceptions by employees of a goalsetting program and personality traits influence job satisfaction and goal commitment.

Design/methodology/approach

Using the German version of Locke and Latham's goalsetting questionnaire, 97 production employees judged the quality of the goalsetting program in their company with regard to content‐related problems of goals (e.g. goal clarity), process in dyad (e.g. supervisor support), and setting‐related aspects (e.g. rewards). Data were also collected on the participants' conscientiousness and neuroticism.

Findings

The results showed that job satisfaction is predicted by content and setting‐related aspects, whereas content‐related aspects affected goal commitment. Conscientiousness explained variance in goal commitment independent of individual perceptions of the goalsetting program, whereas neuroticism affected job satisfaction indirectly via the perceptions of goal content.

Practical implications

Performance management programs that incorporate goals belong to the most widely used management techniques worldwide. The study provides evidence on critical success factors from the view of staff members, which helps to design or optimize current goalsetting programs. Furthermore, the study implies practical consequences in terms of person‐job fit based on personality traits.

Originality/value

The study helps to build a more comprehensive picture of how content, process, and setting‐related perceptions of a goalsetting program influence job satisfaction and goal commitment. In addition, it provides important insights into the processes through which individual differences affect work behavior.

Details

Personnel Review, vol. 40 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0048-3486

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Article
Publication date: 4 January 2008

David C. Leonard

The purpose of this research is to empirically examine the efficacy of setting multiple goals targeting complex competencies with a variety of time horizons pursued across…

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4372

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this research is to empirically examine the efficacy of setting multiple goals targeting complex competencies with a variety of time horizons pursued across a number of years. Most research conducted in the areas of goal setting examines an individual's ability to achieve a single goal targeting a simple skill or behavioral change within a short time period.

Design/methodology/approach

In this longitudinal study competency development is assessed over time periods ranging from nine months to four and half years and examined using both self‐reported change and behavior change demonstrated through critical incident interviews.

Findings

Progress over the study reveals that establishing learning goals is particularly important to the development of competencies. Subjects developed significantly more on competencies for which they set goals than on other competencies. They also demonstrated greater competency development when goals were remembered.

Research limitations/implications

Subjects were studied during a specific life change event – completion of an MBA program. Their particular education environment was designed to support and encourage change. It undoubtedly contributed to their development during the study. Results therefore may not generalize to broader populations. However, the results reveal clear implications for management education in both academic and corporate education settings.

Practical implications

This study highlights important elements in the development process that when included enhance competency development and provide insight into the mechanisms underlying intentional change theory.

Originality/value

The research evaluates the complexity and difficulty involved in competency development. It provides empirical evidence to support goal setting and intentional change theories.

Details

Journal of Management Development, vol. 27 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0262-1711

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Article
Publication date: 11 May 2015

Marco António Arraya, René Pellissier and Isabel Preto

The purpose of this paper is to research factors like task-orientation and collectivism and to examine the relationship between them and goal-setting as research…

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3266

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to research factors like task-orientation and collectivism and to examine the relationship between them and goal-setting as research construct. This research investigates the phenomena of team goal-setting in a selected sports organisation. Therefore 49 players from three Portuguese elite male handball team were selected for the study.

Design/methodology/approach

Three well-known questionnaires were employed to determine the relationships between the above factors in a case setting. Task- and ego-orientation in Sport Questionnaire, the Jackson Psychological Collectivism Measure and the Goal-setting in Sport Questionnaire.

Findings

The results reveal that the team and players are task-oriented, collectivist and possessing professional and personal goal habits. The correlations between questionnaire outcomes indicate that, when the team wants to set goals, it should consider the players’ orientation and the team’s collectivism. Thus team goal-setting is more than only goal-setting, because of the need for task-orientation and collectivism.

Research limitations/implications

The research was conducted using three teams in a specific sports and thus cannot be generalised to the general sports environment. Yet, certainly the strength of the findings indicate that the results and conclusions may be used in a wider sports or business setting.

Practical implications

This research paper should provide managers and coaches with insight into the complexity of team goal-setting. It also should provide insight into the chosen process related to human resources.

Originality/value

The paper adds and demonstrates to the literature on team goal-setting the importance of task-orientation and collectivism as goal-setting mediators.

Details

Sport, Business and Management: An International Journal, vol. 5 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-678X

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Article
Publication date: 1 April 2006

Timothy C. Stansfield and Clinton O. Longenecker

To describe the conduct and outcomes of a field experiment in a US manufacturing facility using goal setting and feedback as productivity improvement tools.

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5235

Abstract

Purpose

To describe the conduct and outcomes of a field experiment in a US manufacturing facility using goal setting and feedback as productivity improvement tools.

Design/methodology/approach

Initial studies were conducted to determine a baseline of performance. A two‐month field experiment was utilized to test and measure productivity. The field experiment involved the implementation of changes to three manufacturing cells for a six‐week period and the training of supervisors and staff. Researchers performed the collection of data, implementation of changes and training of workers.

Findings

Findings suggest that goal setting and timely feedback will lead to improved work performance, greater efficiency, and the establishment of more challenging goals. In addition, findings suggest that information systems which facilitate goal setting and feedback are more effective than traditional supervision systems at improving performance.

Research limitations/implications

Several limitations of this study should be noted. First, the time frame for the intervention was limited to two months. A longer data collection period could ensure the longevity of the conclusions of this analysis. Second, all subjects received verbal feedback followed by the addition of graphic feedback. Therefore, sequence effects cannot be ruled out. On an overall basis, though, the findings of this study can clearly be applied to a wide range of manufacturing organizations

Practical implications

The study is useful for all managers seeking a competitive advantage through improved productivity. It provides significant insight into ways to improve productivity through the use of goal setting and performance feedback implemented by information systems.

Originality/value

This paper fulfills a need for insight into methods for improving productivity, as well as offering practical aid to managers in the manufacturing industry.

Details

International Journal of Productivity and Performance Management, vol. 55 no. 3/4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1741-0401

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Article
Publication date: 12 October 2017

Tony Manning

The purpose of this paper is to explore why objective setting is often found difficult and consider what to do about it. The paper critically assesses the two main…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore why objective setting is often found difficult and consider what to do about it. The paper critically assesses the two main managerial perspectives on objective setting before summarising evidence-based research on what works. Based on this literature review, the paper develops a contingency model of objective setting. It then describes how to use this model in practice.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper uses a review of the managerial and evidence-based literature on objective setting to develop a contingency model of objective setting. It describes how this model is operationalised by developing a scale to measure the differences between jobs and the situations they operate in. The model is represented diagramatically. Guidance is given on how to use the model in practice.

Findings

Result-centred and process-centred approaches to objective setting are described and critically assessed. Evidence-based research describing the relationship between objective setting and performance is also presented. In general, clear and specific goals that are challenging but realistic have a moderate effect on performance. However, this only holds for straightforward and predictable tasks. When prior knowledge is needed to perform a task or when the task is complex, a general goal, behavioural goal or learning goal is more effective. Parallels between the managerial perspectives and the contrasting situations form the basis of a contingency model of objective setting.

Research limitations/implications

The relevant theory is described and critically examined. This provides useful descriptions of two different ways to go about setting objectives. The conclusions of recent studies and reviews using evidence-based research are described. They establish both what works and when it works. Taken together, these insights provide a foundation on which to develop a contingency model of objective setting.

Practical implications

There is no one right way to set objectives. Different situations require different approaches. It is possible to assess situations and establish the appropriate combination of perspectives. It is then possible to develop an appropriate set of objectives for the situation. Guidance is given on how to use this approach in practice. The overall approach is rooted in theory and evidence-based research.

Social implications

The application of this model in the workplace can help individuals to perform more effectively. It can also help line managers, learning and development specialists, and human resource professionals to help individuals to perform more effectively. In so doing, the model helps organisations to function more effectively. This has wider implications for the economy and society.

Originality/value

The paper is original in that it brings together both management theory and evidence-based research to develop a contingency model of objective setting. This model as a whole and the method of assessing job characteristics are original.

Details

Industrial and Commercial Training, vol. 49 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0019-7858

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Article
Publication date: 27 November 2019

Ofer Zwikael and Jack R. Meredith

Project goal setting, led by a project proposal development team, is an important operations process because effective goal setting aligned with the operations strategy…

Abstract

Purpose

Project goal setting, led by a project proposal development team, is an important operations process because effective goal setting aligned with the operations strategy can enhance project investment decision making, project success and thereby operations performance. The purpose of this paper is to argue that because of the strategic nature of this task, the organizational climate (OC) that the proposal development team works in is critical for the effectiveness of their goal setting.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors raise hypotheses regarding the role OC plays in enhancing the effectiveness of the support senior executives provide to project proposal teams. The authors test the hypotheses in a longitudinal survey of 200 managers in the USA.

Findings

Results show that a formal organizational process used by proposal development teams for setting project goals is highly effective and that an appropriate OC further intensifies the positive effect of such a process. However, a formal organizational process has no positive effect on effective goal setting if implemented in an environment with a poor OC.

Originality/value

The paper contributes to the literature by finding that a positive OC intensifies the already positive effect of organizational support. In practice, the creation of such a climate can enhance project goal setting, project success, and as a result, operations performance.

Details

International Journal of Operations & Production Management, vol. 39 no. 12
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-3577

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Article
Publication date: 29 June 2021

Zahra Tabaei Aghdaei, Janet R. McColl-Kennedy and Leonard V. Coote

The purpose of this paper is to: (1) better understand the structure (hierarchy) of customer goals providing conceptual clarity; and (2) propose a hierarchy of customer…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to: (1) better understand the structure (hierarchy) of customer goals providing conceptual clarity; and (2) propose a hierarchy of customer goals conceptual framework that explicates how healthcare customer goals are linked to drivers and outcomes, thus building theory and informing practice.

Design/methodology/approach

The research draws on 21 in-depth interviews of patients with a chronic disease. Drawing principally on construal-level theory and using manual thematic analysis and Leximancer, this article provides new insights into customer goals.

Findings

In a first, the authors identify a two-dimensional structure for each of the three main goal types, which previously had been viewed as unidimensional. The authors develop a conceptual framework linking drivers of goal setting (promotion/prevention focus world view and perceived role) with goal type (life goals, focal goals and action plan goals and their respective subgoals) and outcomes (four forms of subjective well-being). Visual concept maps illustrate the relative importance of certain health-related goals over others.

Research limitations/implications

The usefulness of the authors’ conceptual framework is demonstrated through the application of their framework to goal setting among healthcare customers, showing links between the structure of goals (life goals, focal goals and action plan goals) to drivers (promotion/prevention focus world view and perceived role) and outcomes (subjective well-being) and the framework's potential application to other service settings.

Originality/value

This study contributes to healthcare marketing and service management literature by providing new insights into goal setting and proposing a novel hierarchy of customer goals conceptual framework linking drivers, goal types and outcomes.

Details

Journal of Service Management, vol. 32 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1757-5818

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Book part
Publication date: 15 July 2019

Samantha L. Jordan, Andreas Wihler, Wayne A. Hochwarter and Gerald R. Ferris

Introduced into the literature a decade ago, grit originally defined as perseverance and passion for long-term goals has stimulated considerable research on positive…

Abstract

Introduced into the literature a decade ago, grit originally defined as perseverance and passion for long-term goals has stimulated considerable research on positive effects primarily in the academic and military contexts, as well as attracted widespread media attention. Despite recent criticism regarding grit’s construct and criterion-related validity, research on grit has begun to spill over into the work context as well. In this chapter, the authors provide an overview of the initial theoretical foundations of grit as a motivational driver, and present newer conceptualizations on the mechanisms of grit’s positive effects rooted in goal-setting theory. Furthermore, the authors also draw attention to existing shortcomings of the current definition and measurement of grit, and their implications for its scientific and practical application. After establishing a theoretical understanding, the authors discuss the potential utility of grit for human resource management, related to staffing and recruitment, development and training, and performance management systems as well as performance evaluations. The authors conclude this chapter with a discussion of necessary and potential future research, and consider the practical implications of grit in its current state.

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Article
Publication date: 1 February 1975

FRANCINE S. HALL

Four common goal setting practices in public schools are assessed from the perspective of modern organization theory. The major thesis of the paper is that organizational…

Abstract

Four common goal setting practices in public schools are assessed from the perspective of modern organization theory. The major thesis of the paper is that organizational goals are established through the process of committing policies and allocating resources. Thus, the paper questions the rational approach to goal setting in which goal statements are developed by ad hoc committees independent of the arena in which operative decision making occurs. The paper concludes that goal setting should be viewed as a major confrontation of values and that administrators and policy makers might better clarify school goals by examining their actions.

Details

Journal of Educational Administration, vol. 13 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0957-8234

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