Goal Setting Inputs LO6602

Barry Mallis (bmallis@smtp.markem.com)
11 Apr 1996 07:53:50 -0400

Reply to: RE>Goal Setting Inputs LO6556

Michael has provided a very simple overview of goal setting which rings
true when applied by means of current, practical TQ tools. He writes:

"My goal setting process:

Ask people what they want to do
Post so they can see what others have said
Ask again (against the new knowledge)
Repeat until new goals stop appearing"

More specifically, when faced with a variety of inputs--sometimes
conflicting--about an organizational goal, a group or team or committee
has some alternatives to cope with the variety. This coping is necessary
if focus and direction are to become aligned for participants.

Alignment comes through a selection process based upon the input Michael
describes. Individuals brainstorm in order to surface the knowledge;
brainstorming techniques are legion.

But after that, presented with myriad pieces of knowledge, what then?
Affinity diagrams are a fine way to groups ideas. In a pool of liquid,
much like motes of dust floating on the surface are "attracted" to one
another and begin to bunch, pieces of knowledge can with collaborative
input from participants, begin to coalesce. Themes emerge.

Using a fishbone diagram in th case of root cause analysis can offer free
rein to galloping ideas. Selection of actionable items employs a
selection matrix where one axis contains the varioous alternatives
proposed, while across the top are the selection criteria e.g. time to
completion/fruition; cost; people resource availability; capacity; etc.
Consensus is used to "vote" on each of the alternative goals or processes.

There are other ways to sort out goal setting inputs: the Language
Processing Method (an advanced affinity diagram technique), The Method for
Priority Marking (MPM), a tool for reducing the amount of language data,
and others.

Michael has given me a chance in this posting to do what I am prone to:
get down and dirty and give some specifics about application of our
thoughts: walking the talk.

Best regards,

Barry Mallis

Learning-org -- An Internet Dialog on Learning Organizations For info: <rkarash@karash.com> -or- <http://world.std.com/~lo/>