Outcome Goals Vs. Process Goals

Over the past month, I’ve shared with a few clients the difference between outcome goals and process goals.

I’m not sure who first came up with the distinction but it’s an important one.

If we consider various goals, such as to get married, to make a sale, to “lose weight”, or to get a promotion, those goals are outcome goals or end goals.

Yet, there’s a process involved to reach the outcome we want.

That’s called a process goal.

To succeed, we have to enjoy, or at least be okay with, the process or the means of achieving the outcome we want.

In all the goals listed above, if we aren’t enjoying (or at least okay with) the process of getting “there”, we’ll give up along the way.

More than that, if we focus on the end goal and put pressure on ourselves to succeed and produce a certain outcome, the pressure can be too much.

If a salesperson has an end goal of making twenty calls and demands at least one of the calls results in a sales appointment, they are setting themselves up for incredible frustration that usually will stop them from staying in the process.

On the other hand, if they set a process goal (make twenty calls a day) and trust that if they stay in the process long enough they will enjoy success, they will stay the course.

Outcome goals are fine.

Yet, when we set them we need to switch to process goals.

“What do I need to do, over time, that will likely yield the results I want?”

If I can honestly say, “I’m okay with the process” and I can stay the course, all will end well.

The trick is to have the “end” in mind but to focus on the process and maintain faith in the process.

What do you think? Comment below and let’s have a discussion.

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