One of my favorite expressions is “what gets measured is what gets done.” I use the phrase numerous times when I meet with my team. Why? Because to know if we are reaching our goals, we must monitor our progress.
In business, progress is typically tracked using key performance indicators (KPI’s). What are KPI’s? They are a numerical snapshot of the organization’s success in meeting its critical goals. During strategic planning sessions, KPI’s provide the foundation to measure success.
As the leader of my organization, the first area I reviewed was our KPI’s. I spent hours dissecting our data and identifying opportunities for improvement. After reviewing the KPI’s, I created several critical questions to ask during the weekly meetings with my department leaders.
During the first couple of department meetings, I quickly realized the challenge was not the KPI’s, but our short-term metrics did not line up with our KPI’s. We collected a tremendous amount of data; however, most of the data was not objective or actionable.
Over the next six months, each department revised or revamped its daily, weekly, monthly, and quarterly metrics. In addition to our weekly department meetings, we added a weekly data review meeting. During the meetings, departments rotate presenting their metrics.
To assist us with revising or revamping our metrics, we followed the four-step process below, which the John Maxwell Leadership Foundation developed. Organizations or individuals can use the four-step process to create and measure positive change. The four steps are:
- Start the process by confronting reality and discovering the truth about the problem you want to solve. Next, identify and clarify the root cause of the problem.
- Begin with the end in mind and design an action plan to track progress. The action plan should include:
- Describing current conditions
- Defining success
- Resources required
- People to accomplish the plan
- Identifying partners
- Developing a timeline for completion of the plan with checkpoints
- Implement your action plan. Make adjustments based on metrics.
- Document and track performance to ensure you reach your intended outcomes.
Our weekly data review meetings provided the critical information to let us know if we were on track to meet or exceed our KPI’s.
“If a team is to accomplish its goals, it has to know where it stands.”– John Maxwell
After a lot of hard work and several missteps, I am happy to report that we not only met our goals, but we exceeded our KPI’s!
Are you monitoring your progress?
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