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Are You Ready to G.R.O.W.? Part 1 - THE GOAL


We often find ourselves stagnated - whether it is in our career or, sometimes, even in life. The G.R.O.W. method is an excellent tool that can be used for many areas of stagnation. The more that I use this method, the more I find that it can be used for so many areas of life. The main two areas that I use this tool is for coaching and for mentoring and can be easily mastered using these 4 principles to working through and solving any problem. This method has been used to help leaders become more effective coaches, to help mentors become more effective mentors and to help ANYONE improve their ability to solve any problem. It is not only a systematic method to solve a problem and put actions into place, but it is easy to remember and can be applied to any type of situation. The more you use these principles, the easier it becomes and it becomes “second nature” to getting the results you desire.

So, here it is, G.R.O.W. - G.R.O.W. stands for Goal, Reality, Obstacles/Options, and Way Forward. Today we will double-click on the GOAL and then discuss how to use this G.R.O.W. model in your mentoring and coaching conversations.

1. GOAL: Identify the goal and allow the person that is being coached or mentored to work through the issues to get specific details of the problem that needs to be solved or the goal that needs to be accomplished. Show them that you have confidence in their ability and willingness to solve that problem. Use a series of questions to identify the problem/goal with the intent of increasing the person’s effectiveness.

In order to effectively identify your goals and especially the right type of goals, we use the SMAART GOAL process. Hmmm. You probably heard of SMART GOALS, but we have added an extra A for Accountable:

SMAART goals should be:

S - Specific

M - Measurable

A – Attainable

A – Accountable

R- Realistic

T – Timely

1. SPECIFIC: In order for a goal to be effectively met, it must be specific – clearly defined and narrowed down to a point where it is able to be accomplished. To set specific goals, you can answer the following questions:

*Who: Who is involved?

*What: What do I want to accomplish?

*When: Establish a time frame.

*Where: Identify a location.

*Why: Specific reasons, purpose or benefits of accomplishing the goal.

2. MEASURABLE: You must be able to put metrics around your goals – make it quantifiable so that the goal doesn’t get lost. I prefer to “chunk” my goals into smaller pieces with shorter timelines and measurements. When you measure your progress, you stay on track, reach your target dates, and experience “intermittent reinforcement” of the ability to reach a goal.

To determine if your goal is measurable, ask questions such as……

· By when?

· How much?

· How many?

· How will I know when it is accomplished?

3. ATTAINABLE: It is very important to set goals and measurements that are attainable – able to be achieved. If you set unrealistic goals, you will get discouraged and drop the goal. You can attain most any goal you set when you make a plan and establish a realistic timeframe that allows you to carry out those steps. Goals that may have seemed far away and out of reach eventually move closer and become more attainable, not because your goals shrink, but because you grow and expand to match them.

4. REALISTIC: To be realistic, you have to have a sensible and practical idea of what can be achieved or expected. You have to be willing and able to get the work done. You have to be true to yourself about what you are willing to do to accomplish that goal – you are the only one who can determine how much or how high your goal should be.

5. TIMELY: Your goals should be time bound. With no timeframe associated with your goals, you may not have the sense of urgency to complete the goal and you may never complete the goal – it becomes an ongoing project. If you continue to miss the timeframe set, reevaluate the goal to make sure that you “chunked” it appropriately. Break it down and reset your expectations.

6. ACCOUNTABLE: None of the other steps matter if you don’t hold yourself accountable! Doing what is required and expected to complete your goals is only important if you recognize the successes and the failures. If your goals are met, celebrate them and if they are not met, call yourself out and regroup! Identify barriers to completing the goal and map out a new plan – chunking the goals, identifying new goals, different metrics or even changing the timeframe if needed.

So how do you use the G.R.O.W. method to determine your GOAL? By asking questions. This method does not work if you TELL, TELL, TELL! Through a combination of asking questions, you can determine your SMAART GOALS and begin to work through the remainder of the steps in the process. Not sure where to start? Use some of the sample GOAL questions below.

Sample GOAL Questions:

  • What would you like to accomplish?

  • What is one goal you would like to focus on?

  • How does this goal fit into the big picture?

  • What does success look like?

  • What timeframe or what milestones would you have for this goal?

  • How will you know that you have reached or accomplished your goal?

  • How will you measure success?

Stay tuned for PART 2 when we discuss REALITY.


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