Staying on track in 2015

By the time you are reading this we are about to enter the second quarter of 2015.  That means there only 9 months left in the year.  I bring this up because I’ve noticed increased activity in the wider business environment lately.  When I ask clients how things are going, I’m consistently hearing “Busy”, “Crazy”, “Awesome”, “Overwhelmed”.

Peter Drucker say  “You cannot manage what you don’t measure”.  It seems obvious yet when a business get’s busy, they often put measuring and analysis on the back burner until there is time.  Given that 2015 appears to be starting out well for most, I want to make sure you don’t lose ourselves in trying to make up for lost time and repeating some bad habits from the past.  Below are 5 steps to ensure you end up where you want at the end of 2015:

1)       Identify your company’s Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s) – Quantifiable measurements that reflect the critical success factors of your organisation.  I recommend no more than 10 but depending on your business you may need more.  Examples of some KPI’s include:   number of new customers acquired in the last 30 days, %  increase on sales conversions, increase in average sale, etc.  The list is endless so choose the ones that matter most and will drive change in your organisation.  If you try to measure too much you’ll end up measuring nothing.

2)      Identify who will be responsible for each KPI  – Make sure one person has ultimate accountability for measuring and reporting the KPI.  Determine the frequency it will be discussed.  Monthly is a good place to start if not weekly.

3)      Make sure there is a simple process for measurement.  – Don’t just assign someone the responsibility of measuring a KPI without making sure there is a simple process.  If it’s too time consuming either figure out how to simplify it or choose something else.

4)      What does it mean?  – Don’t just report it, interpret it.  Data means nothing if you don’t learn something from it.  Discuss it, use it to grow from, define action steps as a result.  Even if your KPI reveals something negative, it’s always a positive because now you know you must focus on it.

5)      Do It consistently –   Develop the discipline to review, discuss and learn from your KPI’s however frequently you determine is right for your business.  Things will come up that make it easy to skip a week or month, so don’t let that happen.

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