SMART or stupid?

October 8, 2015

It is important to recognize the place that management hypes occupy in the life cycle, because hypes are short-lived, says Theo Poiesz. The SMART concept is one such hype, currently widely used in the care sector. 


  • Managers tend to uncritically embrace management concepts. Love at first sight smothers critical questions. 
  • SMART is more suitable for targets at an operational level; less so, or not at all, for strategic objectives. 
  • The requirement to formulate new ideas in a SMART way, may extinguish enthusiasm and creativity prematurely.
  • SMART is at odds with leadership. If a manager is more focused on SMART policy, he/she acts more like an accountant than a leader. 
  • There may be valid reasons for choosing strategically on the basis of evidence. After all, not everyone can be a leader. But do not claim leadership when, in reality, it is a matter of followership. Leadership and evidence-based management are too great a contrast for that.

 Read the full text of Theo Poiesz's Column on the Dutch website.

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