Creating Goal Congruence in the Workplace

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Working with people who are only interested in their own personal gain is a recipe for disaster. Such employees lack motivation and are not invested in the coordination or success of the organization. This results in a dysfunctional workforce which is characterized by high staff turnover and an inability to achieve goals. So how can this dysfunctional setup be avoided or remedied? An effective solution is goal congruence. Goal congruence is all about motivating employees to take actions and make decisions that align with the organization’s objectives. The following are some crucial steps to achieving goal congruence.

Know the all-important goals

Goal congruence is about the alignment of objectives, but perfect alignment is normally impossible. Knowing the objectives of all parties involved makes the process of alignment smoother and increases the chances of success. It is vital to know what each employee is looking to achieve in order to determine whether they are a good fit for your organization.

Once you are satisfied that the employees’ objectives align with your organization’s objectives, you should make the organizational objectives clear to all the employees. This transparency is the first milestone in bringing everyone’s goals together and creating oneness within the organization – you know the employees’ goals and they know those of the organization.

Set achievable targets

Target-setting is another important aspect of creating goal congruence in the workplace. If targets are too high and unrealistic, they will demotivate the employees. If they are set too low, they may reduce productivity and motivation. The process of setting targets must be interactive and should try to represent all those affected by the targets. By agreeing on targets with those who are entrusted with achieving them, it is more likely that ideal and achievable targets will be set.

Reward and retain

Employees should be rewarded well for their efforts so that they feel it is worth their while to add value to the organization. It is also easier to retain and work with a well-compensated workforce that feels valued. Rewards should not focus on just monetary value, but should also have a non-monetary angle. Monetary rewards should reflect the amount of work done, and non-monetary rewards should add intrinsic value to each employee.

Create a happy work environment

Work stops being a chore if you are in an environment where you feel free and valued. A good work environment eliminates the need for coercion or exorbitant incentives to get work done. A happy environment doesn’t mean that people get away with doing anything they want. It’s an environment in which there is constructive criticism, a robust reward system, and continuous communication and feedback among everyone in the organization. A comfortable work environment reduces irrational behavior and a focus on self-interest while promoting a teamwork culture which makes goal congruence easier to achieve.

About the Author: A proud Zimbabwean, Naume Guveya currently lives in Harare. An accountant by profession and a writer by passion, she is a health, wellness, and personal development fanatic who wants to make a difference in the world one good deed at a time. Naume loves good food, great music, and amazing books. You can follow her stories on her blog.