Monday, June 13, 2016

The Danger of Outcome Goals

Within a week or so of each other, two posts using such dramatic words: Danger and Peril.


There are several systems of faculty support and accountability that, from my experience, rely far too heavily on outcomes goals. From my experience  focusing too much attention on outcomes goals and not enough on the daily processes of ones work life can create a profound mismatch between behavior and expectations, between goals and the means of achieving goals.

I really have no idea how long it is going to take me to write an article, or a section of an article. However, if I stay in the process and move it forward each and over day, using all of the tools at my disposal to insure maximum productivity, when an article gets done does not really matter. Saying that I one is going to do X amount of an article or do a section by X date often leads scholars to feel shame and demoralization if and when they don't meet that goal. Once they feel ashamed, they tend to retreat from the painful feeling and neglect their work until they recommit to a set of goals that, again, are divorced from the processes of daily work.

If you resonate with this, consider your daily processes and staying in the moment with your work. Paradoxically, it leads to far better outcomes.

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