Everyone has heard the phrase “What gets measured gets done”. In the world of Business Improvement, I would say “what gets measured gets better”. In my experience, most organization achieve at least 10% improvement by just starting to measure their performance. Some organizations avoid measuring their performance because they are afraid of what it will tell them. But you cannot move forward unless you know where you are now.
There are many important benefits of performance measurement:
- To identify whether we are meeting customer requirements: How do we know that we are providing the services/products that our customers require?
- To help us understand our processes: To confirm what we know or reveal what we don’t know: Do we know where the problems are?
- To ensure decisions are based on fact, not on emotion: Are our decisions based upon well-documented facts and figures or on intuition and gut feelings?
- To show where improvement needs to be made: Where can we do better? How can we improve?
- To show if improvements actually happened: Do we have a clear picture?
- To reveal problems that bias, emotion, and longevity cover up: If we have been doing our job for a long time without measurements, we might assume incorrectly that things are going well. (They may or may not be, but, without measurements, there is no way to tell.)
- To identify whether suppliers are meeting our requirements: Do our suppliers know if our requirements are being met?
Fix the Process, Not the Blame
Be aware of the possibility that measures will occasionally reveal performance that is below desired levels. When this happens, don’t shoot the measurer, and don’t look for replacement measures that could show more favorable results. Instead, take actions to find and fix processes that improve performance. It is improvement—progress toward objectives—that demonstrates results and inspires confidence.
If you want to understand how simple measurement can make a difference to your business contact us and we will show you how.