Covey's Roles and Goals Approach

goalswork Dec 22, 2020

25+ years ago I learned of @Stephen Covey's approach to goal setting. He suggested a structure for setting goals that simplified the whole process. Covey highlighted that each of us fill multiple roles in life: person, spouse, parent, athlete, manager, etc. He suggested setting separate goals for each role. He strongly recommends not identifying more than 6 roles.

I liked this approach because it simplified my goal-setting. I identified my roles: personal, child of God, husband, father, child/sibling, church member, manager, and professional speaker. Separating my goals into the separate roles turned a plate of spaghetti into a nice filing cabinet of organization. Setting goals became easier. In addition, considering each role ensured that I balanced both work, personal, and family efforts. As a result, I found greater reason, relaxation, and reward in my life. That balance allowed me to extend my energy to myself, my family. my service, and my work.

You set goals specific to each role. Covey cautioned against setting too many goals for each role. I found it helpful to imagine specific focuses for each role. I share these merely to illustrate what you can do:

  • Person: physical fitness, intellectual growth, social connections, & recreation
  • Husband: gifts for special times, dates, trips together, helping her achieve her goals
  • Father: attend their events & games, play games together, gifts, & their goals
  • Manager: productivity, quality, effectiveness, efficiency, and profits
  • Entrepreneur: profits, publications, marketing, new products, accounting & technology

Listing your goals in terms of results rather than activities enhances your success. I hope that Covey's recommendations about roles and goals simplifies your goal-setting efforts for 2021. May you find the same work-life balance they provided me.

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