Ambitious but Achievable

May 15, 2007 at 8:43 pm Leave a comment

I was recently at a presentation where the speaker commented on the SMART approach to writing objectives and said that that “A” stood for “Ambitious”. The person next to me nudged me and whispered “I think he means “Achievable””. And that got me thinking that the A should stand for “Ambitious but Achievable”.

For it to be possible to evaluate a programme or project, it is necessary to set SMART objectives that allow the indentification of indicators that facilitate evaluation. What do SMART objectives look like? I’ve created several examples (pdf) if you are interested at my interpretation of SMART.

But there is a potential conflict in the concept of “Ambitious but Achievable”: we need to set realistic objectives that can be evaluated – but at the same time we want to make our objectives ambitious enough in order to contribute significantly to the overall aims of a project or programme.


Entry filed under: General.

Accountability and Outcomes – the Penny Drops… The problem with ROI

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