The Smart Way to Success

Team Keghart Editorial, 22 April 2010

From the halls of academia to city halls to the lecterns of motivational speakers, the five-letter acronym , SMART, has in recent years become a guiding light for goal setting in life, in business, in politics and practically in any enterprise. SMART stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Timely. The concept is simple: before you commit yourself to a project, determine whether it can meet the five requirements of SMART. As we launch Phase II of our campaign–what the proposed Western Armenian National Congress (WAN-Congress) aptly calls April 25–to regain our occupied lands and demand Turkey to financially compensate for the calamity it inflicted upon the Armenian nation, it would make eminent sense to check whether our mission can meet the five goal-setting requirements of SMART.

Team Keghart Editorial, 22 April 2010

From the halls of academia to city halls to the lecterns of motivational speakers, the five-letter acronym , SMART, has in recent years become a guiding light for goal setting in life, in business, in politics and practically in any enterprise. SMART stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Timely. The concept is simple: before you commit yourself to a project, determine whether it can meet the five requirements of SMART. As we launch Phase II of our campaign–what the proposed Western Armenian National Congress (WAN-Congress) aptly calls April 25–to regain our occupied lands and demand Turkey to financially compensate for the calamity it inflicted upon the Armenian nation, it would make eminent sense to check whether our mission can meet the five goal-setting requirements of SMART.

 
Specific
Our goals should be straightforward and emphasize precisely what we want to see happen. Specifics help us focus our efforts and define what we intend to do. Specific, in this instance, stands for how we are going to get our occupied lands back, in addition to receiving financial compensation. We have to enunciate which specific territories we will demand when Turkey or third parties ask: “What do Armenians want?” For example, Ara Papian of the Modus Vivendi think tank in Armenia has already calculated that Turkey owes the Armenian nation $41 billion as financial compensation for properties confiscated during the Genocide of Armenians.
Measurable
If we can’t measure our aims, we can’t manage them. Thus we have to choose a goal which can demonstrate measurable progress. And we have to establish concrete criteria for measuring progress toward the attainment of each goal we set for ourselves. A bonus benefit of measurable progress is that it would help keep us on track, assist us to reach our target dates, and experience the exhilaration, if not exultation, of achievement that would spur us to continue our efforts to get closer to our ultimate goal.
Attainable
When we identify the goals that are most important to the Armenian nation, we can then begin to conceive ways to make them come true. To reach our final goal we have to develop the attitudes, abilities, skills, financial capability and the commitment for all steps of the journey.

When we set goals which are too far out of our reach, we would be writing a blueprint of our failure. Although we may start with the best of intentions, the realization that it’s too big of a goal means that our collective subconscious will keep reminding us of this fact and will discourage us from giving our best shot. Our national goal should stretch us slightly so we feel we can do it and will need a real commitment from us.

Realistic
Realistic is not a synonym for “easy”. Realistic, in this context, means “feasible”, “do-able.” It means that the weapons needed to accomplish the mission are available in our arsenal. As a nation, we have to ask ourselves whether we have the acumen—moral, diplomatic, financial—to achieve our goal.
Time
We have to set a timeframe for our goal. We can’t say to ourselves that sometime in the indefinite future (10 years? in 25 years? in 100 years?) we expect to reach our goal. We have to set a target with a definite date and then to work towards that goal. If we don’t set a date for the return of our lands, plus financial compensation, our commitment becomes vague. Without a deadline, there will be no urgency to start taking action. Time must be measurable, attainable and realistic.

Organizations, such as the proposed WAN-Congress, which are pursuing our vital national missions, particularly those who aim to bring Turkey to account, would be wise to include SMART in their strategy toolbox. SMART will help them keep their eyes on the ball.
 

1 comment
  1. I agree that our demands have
    I agree that our demands have to be specific. However, there’s much to say about the strategy of having various demands–from minimalist to maximalist and everything in between. It’s standard approach in negotiations, whether between unions and management or between nations.

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