Organizational Goals – Definition, Types, Importance

3 Types of Organizational GoalsOrganizational goals are strategically set objectives that outline expected results and guide employees’ efforts.

3 types of organizational goals are strategic, tactical, and operational goals.

Purposes of organizational goals are to provide direction to employees of the organization.

Strategic goals are set by and for top management of the organization. Tactical goals are for middle managers to focus on the actions necessary to achieve goals. Operational goals are for lower-level managers to tackle shorter-term issues.

Goals are critical to organizational effectiveness as they serve as an objective for the employees and they work to achieve it.

Organizational goals differ in three different criteria; level, area, and time frame. Let’s look at these criteria’s of goals;


Organizational goal differs in the level of the organization structure or hierarchy.

The organization structure consist of there part; top-level, mid-level and lower-level or first-line managers.

For each level, the goals should be different and more specific; suitable for the level.

“Increase profit and market share” is a suitable goal for top-level managers but not for the lower-level managers. “Increase output by 12%” is a suitable goal for lower-level managers.


Organizations set different goals for different areas more specifically different departments.

An organization may have many departments within its structure; marketing, finance, operations, accounts, human resource, legal and more.

Each department should have a different goal; which specifies the departments about their task but is in line with the whole organization’s goal.

Time Frame

Organizations have many goals across different time frames. “Open 500 branch across the country” is a suitable long-term goal for a bank; “LC issue should increase by 50% within six months” short-term goal for a bank.

The difference in goals required because of the organization’s level, area or department, and time frame.

Types of Organizational Goals

Based on 3 three criteria’s goals can be categorized into three types.

3 Types of Organizational Goals are Strategic Goals, Tactical Goals, Operational Goals3 types of organizational goals are;

  1. Strategic Goals.
  2. Tactical Goals.
  3. Operational Goals.

Strategic Goals

Strategic goals are goals set by and for top management of the organization. These goals are made by focusing on broad general issues.

Strategic goals or strategies are usually long-term and from this goal, other goals are made and set for different time-frames and areas.

Tactical Goals

Tactical goals are set for middle managers. These goals focus on how to operationalize actions necessary to achieve the strategic goals.

Middle managers of various departments are usually responsible for their attainment.

Tactical goals are set by the middle managers, but often top-managers set tactical goals for the middle managers.

Operational Goals

Operational goals are set by and for lower-level managers. Operational goals are usually made to tackle shorter-term issues associated with the tactical goals and lower-managers are responsible for their attainment.

The 3 levels of goals within an organization form a hierarchy of goals, with lower-level goals forming a means-end chain with the next level of goals.

Related: Difference between Leadership and Management

Importance and purpose of organizational goals

Importance of GoalsOrganizational goals, often used interchangeably, are the ends toward which activity is aimed. Goals are the desired outcomes for individuals, groups, or entire organizations.

They represent not only the endpoint of planning but also the end toward which all other managerial functions are aimed.

Objectives are set to a particular time and thus the same objective is not repeated year after year, month after month or day after day.

Goals are critical to organizational effectiveness as they serve several purposes.

Organizations have several different kinds of goals, all of which must be appropriately managed.

4 reasons why goals are important:-

  1. Goals Provide Guidance and Direction.
  2. Goals Intensely Planning and Actions
  3. Goals Motivate.
  4. Goals Help in Control.

These are explained  below;

Goals Provide Guidance and Direction

Goals provide guidance and a unified direction for people in the organization.

They show the employees where the organization is going and why getting it is important.

Goals simply define what the organization wants.

Goals Intensely Planning and Actions

Goal-setting does intensely affect aspects of planning. Effective goal setting facilitates good planning and good planning facilitates future goal setting

.Goals are desired outcomes for organizations and plans are the best-perceived ways to reach them. So a proper goal helps set a proper plan.

Goals Motivate

Goals also can serve as a motivational source for employees. Goals should be specific and moderately difficult can inspire people to work harder, especially if attaining the goal is going to result in rewards.

For goals to be a tool of motivation; the organization requires an effective reward system and a friendly work environment.

Related: Goal Setting Theory of Motivation

Goals Help in Control

Goals act as a mechanism for control and evaluation. Performance can be measured and evaluated in the future in terms of how successfully today’s goals are accomplished.

Goals can serve these purposes and much more; if people in charge of setting goals can overcome the barriers and set them properly and effectively.

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