Goal Chart Template
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- December 4, 2019 Updated
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Big goals can be discouraging; focusing on the end result of a long project can make you feel that the goal is unachievable. Breaking a big goal into bite sizes, however, can help you more easily stay motivated and complete your objective.
To help you achieve your big goals, we’ve created this printable goal chart template. It will not only help you simplify and set goals, but will also help you visually represent it - another important step in goal fulfillment.
We’ve prepopulated our template with a fundraising example. And while you can use this goal chart template to help you track that, it is not merely a fundraising tool. Rather, our goal chart template can be personalized to help motivate you to meet any life goals.
Here are five examples of good, measurable goals you could track your progress towards with this template:
- Weight lost
- Books read
- Countries visited
- Money earned
- Fitness goals achieved
Our goal chart template can be used to help motivate you to achieve results towards any goal that can be broken down into small steps.
The download file comes with two tabs in two worksheets:
These worksheets are both printable goal chart templates, each designed to work independently of the other. Please see details below to learn how to create a goal chart in Excel.
Create a Goal Chart in Excel
Image Goal Chart Template
People are visual creatures. And when you have a visual representation of your progress towards your goal, it can help keep you motivated.
Have you ever seen the classic fundraising thermometer? This worksheet utilizes a similar method of visualizing progress towards your goal.
The first tab of the Image Goal Chart Template includes two main sections, the table and the image.
Section 1: The Table
This section is the workhorse of the worksheet. To create your goal chart, you will need to enter all the details about your goals here.
You can add a logo and your name at the top. To add a logo, follow the directions in this post:
Then, give your goal chart a name. Simply replace the prepopulated text, “Annual Fundraising Campaign,” with whatever title you’d like. Our example comes with sample data so it looks like a fundraising goal chart, but you can use this template to set any goals.
How to Customize Your Fundraising Goals
Now, it’s time to really dive into your goals and objectives so you can stay organized. This worksheet is currently set up to track progress over 24 distinct periods. However, you can decrease or increase the number of periods to meet your needs.
What makes sense for your goal? Do you want to track progress each month for a year? Or every week for a year?
Don’t feel limited to time-based periods. Do you have a desire to run a marathon? Break your goal into the number of training sessions you need, or the number of miles you want to run in preparation.
To help you determine the best way of breaking up your goal, spend some time brainstorming. What makes the most sense to you? There’s not a single right way of tracking progress.
Once you know how many periods you need to track, you can change the formatting of the worksheet to match.
Deleting periods is a straightforward process. You simply highlight the rows of the table you want to get rid of. Then, right click and hit delete. To ensure proper spacing in the second section of the worksheet, you want to delete the entire row.
Adding rows is a bit more complicated. You must add rows to the right location to ensure the formulas for the table continue working. To add a row, click on the line that is directly above the total. Then right click and select “Insert.” Again, to keep the spacing correct, insert an entire row.
Repeat this step until you have all of the periods you need. If desired, you can follow the directions in this post to fill your period names automatically. This can help you verify that you have the correct number.
How to Use the Image Goal Chart Worksheet
Now that you have the correct number of periods, it’s time to put your spreadsheet to work to help you achieve results.
You can rename the periods in a way that makes sense. As you make changes, just make sure they will help you with your dream of achieving your goal. Keep it simple and easy to understand.
Next, think about your goal for each period. The goal setting process can take some time, so don’t just rush through it.
Are you going to take your long-term goal and divide it evenly by the number of periods? Or do you want to start off with lower goals and increase the number as you gain momentum?
Setting SMART goals can help you work through this decision making process. SMART goals are:
- Relevant, and
How much can you realistically accomplish during each period? Set your goals and then go ahead and enter that number for each one.
You will now be able to see the specific goal for each time-based period on the table. It is relevant because it helps you draw closer to your primary goal.
An Example of a SMART Goal
Taking the time to write out your SMART goal can help you achieve it. As an added benefit, you will easily be able to enter the information into your goal chart and begin tracking your results.
Here is an example of a SMART goal for a travel life goal:
- Specific: I want to visit 15 countries in the next 5 years.
- Measurable: I will visit at least 3 countries each year.
- Attainable: If I stick to my budget and plan wisely, I can achieve this goal.
- Relevant: I want to explore the world and this life goal will help me do that.
- Time-Based: I want to achieve my goal within 5 years.
Now, your worksheet is ready to track your results. As you make progress, update your total for that period in the “Achieved” column. The final column will show you how much more you need to achieve before you reach your goal for that period.
Section 2: The Image
Before you enter any achieved progress, the image on the right-hand side of the screen is completely covered by a gray box. The heading at the top says, “0% Funded.”
You can update that wording to match your goal. What verb would make sense for the life goal you are tracking?
As you document progress in the goal chart tracker, the grey box will begin to be replaced with a motivating image. Each time you update the numbers in the “Achieved” column, the image will automatically update as well. This progress will reveal more of the hidden picture.
When you have reached 100% of your goal, you will see the image completely:
It’s a visual way to track your progress and help you stay motivated for achieving your goals.
Update the Picture in the Stacked Column Chart for Motivation
This image is actually embedded in a combination stacked column chart in Excel. So, if the image of a person climbing a ladder doesn’t give you the motivation you need, you can select a different picture.
However, not every image is a good fit for this template. As you make progress, your image will be stretched up across the chart.
If the image you select is too small, it will become really grainy by the time you reach your goal. Vertical, higher resolution photos will work best.
You want to see what the image will look like when you reach your goal, so before you switch out your image, take time to enter enough data in the “Achieved” column that you have 0% remaining.
Now it’s time to switch out your image, so you can see how it fits.
First, locate the image on your computer and make sure you know where it is saved. That way you can easily insert it when it’s time.
Once you have your picture ready to go, right click on the image of the man on the ladder. You need to make sure your mouse is on that image, and not on the labels on the side. When you right click, you will have several options. You need to navigate to the word “Fill” at the top of the menu that appears.
From the “Fill” menu, you must select “Picture.” Then, select “From a File.”
Now you can use the browse feature to find the image you want to view on your goal tracker. Select this image, and click “Insert.”
What do you think? Was your image stretched too much? If yes, experiment with a different image.
If not, your image is ready to use. Simply delete the mock data you entered in the “Achieved” column, and save the template.
Graph Goal Chart Template
The second worksheet in this template is set up in a similar style. It is also broken into two main sections, the table and the graph.
Section 1: The Table
This table is identical to the table in the Image Goal Chart Template. You can follow the directions in The Table section above to:
- Add a logo and name,
- Name your goal,
- Insert or delete rows,
- Add your mini-goals for each period, or
- Update your achieved progress for each period.
Once you have this table set up, you are ready to use the graphs.
Section 2: The Graphs
There are two different graphs to help you visualize and track your progress. There is a doughnut chart and a bar graph.
For the bar graph, the period names you enter in the table will be the axis labels. You want to select period names that make sense when viewed visually.
When you first setup the table, you will see that no sections of the doughnut are filled in. You can also see a bar representing each period’s goal. The goal bars in this graph are blue, and the achieved bars are orange. At first, no orange bars will be visible.
But, as you add data into the table, the graphs will both update automatically:
Achieving your goals means the doughnut graph reaches 100% and turns completely blue. You will also be able to see how well you performed each period in the bar graph.
How to Use the Goal Chart Template for Achieving Your Goals
Now that you’ve customized the goal charts, it’s time to use them to track goal milestones. You can also use them to share your progress with others to help you stay accountable to your goal.
Here are three creative ways you could use the visual elements in this template:
- Take a screenshot and place it on your website or blog. Each period, update the image to reflect your current progress.
- To stay motivated, print out the chart and hang it where you can see it. Update it often to keep an eye on your progress.
- Share a picture of the visuals on social media platforms. Let your followers see the progress and celebrate with you.
- Pull the graph up when you’re not feeling motivated. Look at how far you’ve already come.
However you decide to use the goal chart template, it will be a visual way for you to track your progress towards personal goals.
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