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Setting Goals for the New Decade

BHAG – Pronounced “bee – hag” is an acronym for Big Hairy Audacious Goal.

These types of goals are meant to be outrageous but not impossible to achieve. BHAGs are meant to be completed in the long term, allowing a goal to be a driving force towards a major end result. This type of goal should push you out of your comfort zone, encourage you to take risks, require time and patience, and deliver satisfaction at the end of the journey.

As we enter into a new year AND a new decade, there’s no time like the present to be taking time to reflect on where we are and where we want to be. Both on a personal and professional level. TDC staff has recently added the word BHAG to our daily vocabulary. Looking at each project and challenge with a fresh take – is there a BHAG in this that we can take advantage of?

We’ve also adopted an official BHAG list in our office – where any idea is welcome at any time. It’s become a sort of sounding board to help the staff make big goals for themselves, and for the organization. The business-driven BHAGs have even made their way on to our staff meeting agendas. Talking about our big goals, and taking time to reflect on the progress made to achieve those goals each meeting gives the staff a sense of ownership over exciting change. Especially when some goals are very long term in nature, having a unified vision for the company gives our staff purpose and creates a stronger sense of team.

BHAGs are not just for personal goals, or organizations like TDC. Many Fortune 500 companies have BHAGs that have been the driving force for their success. Read more about BHAG from James Collins and Jerry Porras – the gentlemen who conceptualized the idea in the book Built to Last.

Do you have a Big Hairy Audacious Goal that you’re working on? Have you shared it publicly to keep yourself accountable? While some goals may never be fully recognized, it’s good to have a big overarching idea to work towards. Are you a manager at work? Do your employees have a BHAG? Try spending some time with them at your next review to discuss a BHAG for your organization or department. This small step can lead to huge positive gains – getting your team excited and invested in the future success of your company.

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