Make your Sustainable Packaging SMART — Part 5 of 5 — Time Bound

Adam Peek
3 min readFeb 5, 2021

For a little over 3 years, I was maniacal about time. Time management, time tracking apps, time budgeting, schedule blocking, pomodoro techniques. All of it. At the time, I was in graduate school for a Masters of Christian Leadership, helping to teach and lead a church of about 300 people, volunteering as the Chaplain of the Air Force Prep School basketball team, on 3 non profit boards, working a full time job in the packaging industry, with 5 young kids (under the age of 10) and 1 incredibly patient and loving wife.

I did realize a few very valuable things during this period of my life. 1) It’s ok to say no to stuff! 2) I have an incredibly resilient family 3) most people have more time than they realize; and 4) we probably don’t value time in our society as much as we do money

Having a proper understanding of time is wildly beneficial in your personal life as well as goal setting. Time is socialistic. Nobody has more time than any other person on the planet. The sun rises and sets for everyone. There are 168 hours in a week, subtract out sleeping 6–9 hours a night, you’re left with anywhere from 105–120 hours every week that you are awake. It’s actually pretty wild when you really break it down.

Using time bound goals in your sustainable packaging goal setting program is absolutely necessary because without time, you can’t communicate to your customers and to your internal team what winning looks like. Time bound goals will help you develop timelines and parse up the tasks needed to accomplish your specific, measurable, attainable, and relevant goals. I would argue, in fact, that time is what binds all the elements together. You can’t set specific goals without a time to accomplish them AND you can’t set time bound goals without something to accomplish. It’s symbiotic for sure.

Let’s continue to thread the needle of the food CPG looking to set sustainable packaging goals to provide a specific example.

Overall statement — We are going to reduce our carbon footprint of our packaged food products by 10% every year until 2025 and do so by labeling all of our products with a carbon rating.

S — We want to reduce carbon impact of our packaging (specific)

M — Carbon impact by 10% (measurable)

A — “every year” drives attainable innovation goals

R — labeling the products communicates to the consumer what the goal is (relevant)

T — “Every year” “until 2025”; the goal has an expiry date and date targets (Time Bound)

As you can probably tell, the time portion will really create the urgency to drive innovation for the goals above. If that goal said “by the year 3,000” it would be specific, it would be measurable (assuming the earth is still habitable then), it would likely be attainable, is time bound, but has 0 relevance to your customers today. Time impacts specificity, it impacts measurability, it impacts attainability, and it impacts relevancy.

Don’t sleep on the importance of time (see what I did there)! It is imperative for your sustainable packaging journey and goal setting.

I use a time management tool to help control my schedule. I’d love to buy your and your team a virtual lunch and talk about your sustainable packaging goals. Head over to and let’s set some time together to chat.

Later today, look for a bonus summary written by my friend, Camille Corr Chism about sustainable packaging specifics. She’s so great, she deserved her own section!



Adam Peek

I help food, beverage, direct sales, personal care, and CBD/Cannabis companies use labeling and flexible packaging to sustainably sell products