To put it simply, the "% complete" for any given goal in Cascade is just showing how close we are to completing the goal. It's calculated using this formula:

(**Current Progress** - **Initial Value**) / (**Target Value** - **Initial Value**)

Every goal in Cascade has an **initial value** and a **target**. We are starting in one place, and want to get to another. At a minimum, every goal is at least tracking from 0 (**initial**) to 100% done (**target**). The example below is just like that:

Whenever a goal has progress, that progress is compared to the target vs. where we came from (the initial value). In this case, the % complete is simple because it's the same as the progress itself: **52.71%** (see formula below).

(**52.71** - **0**) / (**100** - **0**) = 52.71%

It's not really even worth doing the formula for this one 😉

**What if we're not tracking from 0-100% done?**

It doesn't matter - the logic is the same, regardless of what numbers are entered. In the example below, the goal is to increase social media presence by growing followers from 0 - 10,000.

So far we have 1,500 followers out of the 10,000 follower target, so...

(**1.5k** - **0**) / (**10k** - **0**) = 15%

This is still a pretty simple example though...let's try a more interesting one.

**What if our initial value isn't 0?**

The formula still works the same way! Let's say we're starting with 1,500 followers and want to get to 10,000 from there, but we *don't* change our progress. That will change things...

If we have an initial value of 1,500 followers, and our *progress *is also 1,500 followers, that means we haven't really made any progress. We're still at the same point as we started at, so technically we've made **0% progress** so far.

(**1.5k** - **1.5k**) / (**10k** - **1.5k**) = 0%

If we have an initial value of 1,500 followers, and our progress is 3,000 followers, that means we ** have **actually made progress. We've gained 1,500 followers compared to where we started, and our target is still 10,000:

*"But wait...shouldn't 3,000 out of 10,000 be 30% complete?"*

**Incorrect! **If the initial value here was "0" that would be right. However, we *started *at 1,500 followers, so in reality the whole point of this goal is to *net gain* *8,500 followers* (10k - 1.5k). You can see the proof in the same formula from before:

(**3k** - **1.5k**) / (**10k** - **1.5k**) = 18%

**What if the initial and target values are very close to each other?**

This is where you can sometimes see some wonky "% complete" numbers, but everything is still working the same way. It's just a matter of how sensitive the differences between the values are.

For example, let's say we wanted to improve a profit margin from 3% to 3.75% and we have a greater-than-expected margin of 5% right now. Technically, this would mean we're hitting **267%** of our target (woah!). Just check the formula:

(**5** - **3**) / (**3.75** - **3**) = 267%

**What if the initial and target values are the same?**

This is the only time where things are different. This is the classic "**maintain**" target example, such as maintaining a team of 3 people. If we wanted to maintain a team of 3 but actually have 5 people, what would happen? Let's see...

(**5** - **3**) / (**3** - **3**) = (Undefined)

You might remember the old math rule that says we can NEVER divide by zero, and that applies here, too. In situations like this, the "% complete" part of tracking falls off and Cascade leans entirely on the unit itself.

In this case, we're "2 people" ahead and there is no "% complete" to be found.

For more information on where the "ahead/behind" value and status come from in Cascade, see this article.