My 5-Step Process to Achieving Your Goals as a Speech Therapist

If you’re anything like me, you have a list a mile long of things you want to improve! It’s kind of overwhelming! So how can you set attainable goals to grow as a speech therapist?

Here’s my 5-step process to create smart goals and set myself up for success!

Step 1: Get all of your great ideas onto paper to help build a vision for your future!

I love a good brain dump, where I jot down all of the things I’d love to do.

Don’t hold back here! Write down even your craziest ideas!

For example, you could set goals for your students (XX% will meet their IEP goals), your work goals (get more productive and organized with reports, cut down time spent billing, implement literacy-based therapy), and your personal life (leave school by 4pm daily!)

Step 2: Narrow it down to create manageable expectations for your goals.

Set yourself up for success and pick a few things to focus on.

I put this quote on my wall as a reminder. “You can do anything, but not everything!” We’ll be much better off just setting a few goals and really smashing them (compared to setting tons of goals and not really making any progress)!

Maybe in this quarter, you want to focus on being more productive with your time and make it a goal to stop taking your work home with you at night!

Step 3: Design your goals with SMART objectives.

We’re all experts at this when it comes to writing goals for our students, but the S.M.A.R.T. framework is a great reminder!

S – Specific
M – Measurable
A – Action-Oriented
R – Realistic
T – Timely

It makes it a lot easier to follow through with a goal!

So with my goal of cutting down billing time, my SMART goal was written like this: “By March 15, I will use the SLP Now Medicaid billing templates only a weekly basis to complete billing in less than 10 minutes/week.”

Step 4: Write your goal and place it somewhere visible!

We can have super fabulous goals, but they’re kind of meaningless if we can’t remember them!

I like writing my top three goals on sticky notes and putting them on my computer as a reminder.

Step 5: Ask for help from other speech therapists.

If you’re struggling with any of the steps, reach out to other SLPs! You never know what you’ll find!


Goal Inspiration

We posted on social media asking SLPs what their goals are. (Check out the post linked below to read some of their awesome ideas!)

A post shared by SLP Now® (@slpnow) on


We made a list of the most common goals and picked some resources to help you get started.

Note: These are broad categories! Don’t forget to set S.M.A.R.T. goals for yourself. 🙂

1. Get Organized

If this is your goal, then you’re in luck! I love organization and shared all of my favorite ideas here!

2. Streamline Data Collection/Medicaid Billing

Here’s a whole blog post about streamlining your data collection.

3. Increase Student Goal Awareness

Nicole Allison (Speech Peeps) shares how she set up her goal bulletin board! Love all of her functional decoration!

4. Implement Literacy-Based Therapy

I love using children’s books and stories to help students make more meaningful progress in speech therapy! Be sure to check out our blog posts for some ideas/inspiration. Don’t forget to join us at the SLP Summit for a practical presentation with tips to help you implement literacy-based therapy with your caseload, too!

5. Improve Therapy for Students using AAC

Anne Page (Beautiful Speech Life) wrote a great blog post on 5 free AAC resources. She’s an amazing resource if you’re looking to step up your AAC game!

6. Improve Fluency Therapy

Lauren LaCour (Busy Bee Speech) is your “go to” for easy-to-implement fluency therapy. She has some fabulous fluency binders in her Teachers Pay Teachers store. She also did a great presentation on fluency. I love how she combines the research (she really knows her stuff!) with her practical experience. Lots of practical ideas that you can use in your speech room today!

7. Provide Better Explanations to Parents

Scheduling time to practice explaining evaluation results/IEP goals before a meeting is a great first step.

If you want a little support, Natalie Snyders also offers handouts to make this easy! Parents are so overwhelmed at these meetings, and Natalie’s visuals are a great comprehension booster.

Check out this post for five quick and easy steps to crush your SLP goals this year! This post also includes a list of the top 10 goals listed by SLPs! Click through to get tons of ideas for your goal-setting session!

8. Spend Less Time Writing IEPs

I love SLP Toolkit’s Present Levels Assessments! They are a huge time-saver when it comes to writing IEPs!

9. Be an Awesome Supervisor

Maureen Wilson (The Speech Bubble SLP) has a fabulous binder to keep you organized!

10. Self-Care 

Shannon from Speechy Musings offers some great support and advice when it comes to self-care. This blog post is a great place to start!

Let us know in the comments! Did you set any SLP goals? Do you have any resources that we need to know about?

marisha-mcgrorty-about-mobile

Hi there! I'm Marisha. I am a school-based SLP who is all about working smarter, not harder. I created the SLP Now Membership and love sharing tips and tricks to help you save time so you can focus on what matters most--your students AND yourself.

Reader Interactions

Comments

  1. I also use a version of SMART … but I learned it with 2 more steps:
    E (evaluate) and R (reward)
    SMARTER
    (I learned this at a workshop for ASL-English interpreters presented by Ray James from University of Arkansas at Little Rock.)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *