Goal setting has always been regarded as the efficient method for increasing the overall performance of employees and organization. Particular goals predetermine directions and time limits to achieve results. The role of goal setting has been overestimated as far as there are side effects that negatively influence employees’ behavior and organizational culture.
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The article under consideration entitled “Goals Gone Wild: The Systematic Side Effects of Overprescribing Goal Setting” was written by Lisa D. Ordonez, Maurice E. Schweitzer, Adam D. Galinsky, and Max H. Bazerman in 2009.
The authors provide readers with the information concerning the harmful effects of goal settings. According to authors, too little attention has been paid to the notion of adverse sides of goal settings. The main idea of the article is that too specific or challenging goals may lead to the unethical behavior, distorted attention to various significant aspects, the decrease in intrinsic motivation, and worsening of the organizational culture (Ordonez et al. 6).
First, the authors examine the negative consequences of too specific goals. When goals are too narrow, employees may overlook other significant aspects of work. For instance, when manufacturers of Fiat Pinto were given definite goals to produce a car at minimum cost, they neglected necessary safety measures.
This situation is a vivid example of the adverse effect of the narrow goal setting. However, too specific goal setting can be inevitable to achieve the better performance. Three constituents influence the outcomes of goal setting including goal commitment, task characteristic, and national culture (Robbins and Judge 256). In the provided example, employees displayed devotion to goals, but the task characteristic was poor.
In the next part of the paper, authors pay attention to the fact that too challenging goals may result in the unethical behavior of employees. Ordonez et al. provide a profound explanation and vivid examples to prove their position. Besides, authors admit that challenging goals are not the only reason for the unethical behavior. In my opinion, this statement symbolizes that authors are not biased in their judgments.
I do not agree with authors’ view that the increased competition because of the high goal setting is an adverse result. The necessity in competition depends on the company and organizational culture. When teamwork is essential to the successful work, competition may lead to poor performance. However, the manager may set such goals that will refer to the team as a whole. In other cases, competition may be required as far as it enhances workers’ creativity and desire to do their best.
One more significant aspect of the challenging goal setting refers to the notion of motivation. Managers decrease the level of intrinsic motivation by laying more emphasis on the external motivation. However, the manager can set challenging goals that are connected with intrinsic motivation.
The leadership style and ability to inspire employees play a crucial role here. Thus, if goals are high and employees consider their achievement as a part of personal growth, they will receive even the higher level of satisfaction after the accomplishment. At the same time, when employees are motivated intrinsically, there is a danger of becoming too frustrated if goals will not be accomplished.
The article under evaluation proves that goal setting is a challenging task. The most significant idea of the whole paper is that all goals should be carefully chosen before their prescription. The principle “the more, the better” does not work when it comes to the efficient management and organization.
Ordonez, Liza, Maurice Schweitzer, Adam Galinsky and Max Bazerman. “Goals Gone Wild: The Systematic Side Effects of Overprescribing Goal Setting.” Academy of Management Perspectives 23.1 (2009): 6-16. Print.
Robbins, Stephen and Timothy Judge. Organizational Behavior. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey: Pearson, 2015. Print.