Setting leadership performance goals is at the heart of any solid development plan.

But they don’t happen in a vacuum.

The most productive work happens when individual performance goals are linked to a compelling vision that serves all levels of the organization, including stakeholders, the team and across departments.

The shift happens when the motivation to improve is clear and there is an appropriate use of resources.

Not only does the goal meet the S.M.A.R.T. framework (specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, timely) but it aligns strategically with the ecology of the organization as a system.

Leaders can use these simple yet powerful coaching questions to find the motivation behind the goal and measure the ecology of the goal against the company vision.

13 coaching questions leaders can ask to validate individual performance goals


  1. How does the goal align with the company vision?

2. How does the goal add value?

3. Does the goal produce measurable results?


4. Who do we become as a result of achieving the goal?


5. What is the motivation behind achieving the goal?

6. Why is important to us? 


7. What do we know already? 

8. What skills do we need to learn to take aligned action?


9. What actions need to take place in order to work toward and achieve the goal?

10. What’s the first step?

11. What will be the last step in achieving the goal?


12. How does my environment support my goal? 

13. Who in my sphere of influence can support my growth?

Asking for clarity and focus on performance goals using these coaching questions will foster alignment across the organization, link the motivation to the big picture and validate the potential effectiveness and use of resources.

Where can you begin to use these coaching questions in your leadership conversations? I’d love to hear from you! Drop a comment below.