Sunday, January 11, 2009

Big Hairy Audacious Goals

I just totally love this new phrase ‘Big Hairy Audacious Goal’ (or BHAG) which was proposed by Jim Collins and Jerry Porras in in their book ‘Built to Last’. A BHAG is a form of vision statement “ audacious ten to thirty-year goal to progress towards an envisioned future.”

It strikes me as a very Tom Peters kind of idea and one that definitely appeals to me. They write about it in the context of teamwork, but to me I can see how this can be such a useful leadership asset as well.

“A true BHAG is clear and compelling, serves as unifying focal point of effort, and acts as a clear catalyst for team spirit. It has a clear finish line, so the organization can know when it has achieved the goal; people like to shoot for finish lines.”

It is an interesting exercise to think about my work and my organisation and ask how we could stretch ourselves be setting the challenge of our own particular Big Hairy Audacious Goal.