Goal-setting season is upon us! The time of the year when HR expects us to waste our precious allotted time on this planet, by jumping through pointless hoops to please their brain-dead selves. And the same time of the year when I wish them a wretched new one.
Goals probably have some sense in specific disciplines. Production: increase output by 5%, decrease downtime by 10%. Sales: increase sales to customers by 5%. Marketing: market expansion by 5%.
But, for those whose daily work is less transactional, it's rather like Six Sigma. The metrics become difficult, if not actually meaningless, if you really think about it. Furthermore, for those whose work is more focussed towards sporadic and unpredictable requirements—such as regulatory and customer non-sales demands—the future year's workload cannot be predicted, if you really think about it.
Fortunately, for HR and the ineffectual middle-management that's supine to them, they don't have to really think about it. They only have to expect it.
It's all so meaningless; but its meaninglessness is lost in the machine. I'm not even sure how we got here, I'm just fortunate that I haven't got much longer to go.