A goal is a brief, clear statement of an outcome to be reached within a timeframe of 3-5 years. A goal is a broad, general, tangible and descriptive statement. It does not say how to do something, but rather what the results will look like. It is measurable both in terms of quality and quantity. It is time based. It is achievable. It is a stretch from where we are now. Above all, it is singular. Goals can be described or defined as outcome statements that define what an organization is trying to accomplish both programmatically and organizationally. Some common business goals are grow profitability, maximize net income, improve customer loyalty and etc. Notice the brevity of these statements. In comparison, an objective is a specific, measurable, actionable, realistic, and time-bound condition that must be attained in other to accomplish a particular goal. Objectives define the actions must be taken within a year to reach the strategic goals. For example if an organization has a goal to grow revenues. An objective to achieve the goal may be introducing three new products by 2018 Q3. Other examples of common objectives are, increase revenue by 5% in 2019, and etc. Notice how the objectives are more specific and provide more detail. A goal is where you want to be and objectives are steps taken to reach the goal. Difference between goals and objective
1. I want to be pilot by age 25
2. We would be a great country in 5 years
3. I want to be a professional in my field
1. We will produce 500 grandaunts December
2. I will succeed in the tournament
3. We are winning the 2018 World Cup
It has been said that goals without objectives can never be achieved while objectives without goals will never get you to where you want to be. Indeed the two concepts are related and yet separate. Using both can enable you (or the organization) to be and do what you want to do. Some management academics would say the difference between goals and objective is a measure of progress that is needed to get to the destination. In this context goals are the long term outcomes the organization wants/needs to achieve. More than not, these goals are often open and unstructured in nature. Goals can be fluid and are directional in nature. Objectives tend to be single achievable outcomes they are concrete in statement and purpose. There is no ambiguity as to whether they have been achieved or not and are short term