Guru is a Sanskrit term for mentor, guide, expert, or master of a certain field of knowledge. There are gurus for everything, including business metrics for measuring success. His name was Peter Drucker and he is widely acknowledged as the inventor of modern business management. One of his most famous quotes is:
“If you can’t measure it, you can’t improve it.”– Peter Drucker
At Motivation Excellence, we have our own guru of measurement. His name is Bob Graham and he’s the Vice President of Client and Technology Solutions, but honestly, when we introduce him we say he’s the “king of data” or our “rules aficionado.” At any rate, you can tell, we respect his expertise in this area. As our “passionate advocate” for this blog, Graham says establishing and measuring critical data points is essential to the success of incentive, employee, and loyalty programs.
“Metrics allow our clients to know if they used their budget, internal resources and relationships in the channel effectively. That doesn’t always mean financial metrics. Without metrics, you don’t know if you were successful in moving the business forward or achieving the intended goals.”
Start at the Beginning
Understanding your starting point is the springboard to moving forward. If you don’t know where the starting line is, how can you know when you’ve crossed the finish line? This is important not only to a myriad of business applications but personal ones too. Whether you want to increase sales, improve partnerships, lose weight or run faster, knowing where you are now and where you want to be eventually is the first step toward making informed decisions that can lead to success.
For our clients, Graham states it’s never a one-size-fits-all solution.
“Since each company’s goals are different and the way they operate is different (even in the same vertical) we need to start fresh with each client. Identifying the goals, understanding the data and performance needed to achieve those goals are the starting points to build the measurements.”
Graham continues that understanding what will motivate participants to reach the goals is another important factor to consider. Another factor? Avoid setting unrealistic goals.
“Setting mutually beneficial expectations through the program rules that achieve the goals and provide a meaningful reward for the participant through the program structure, award selections and communications is the balance that creates the optimum results.”
Focus on What’s Most Important
When used well, tracking metrics can be very motivating, even for those struggling or those already excelling. Setting up short, medium, and long-term goals gives you metrics to track and adjust at each level. Don’t get overwhelmed tracking EVERYTHING. Focus on the most important objectives and pinpoint the metric that gives you the most information.
As with most personal and professional development skills, there are many tips on how to become better at selecting and measuring metrics for success. Whether you’re a CEO trying to break into the top tier of your vertical, or a weekend warrior training to compete in a triathlon, finding your critical metrics will put you on the right path from the beginning.
Repeat Your Success
There’s a saying in the carpentry world, “measure twice, cut once.” In the business world, when it comes to metrics for success a better saying might be, “measure often, adjust as needed, and build your success more than once.”
For us at Motivation Excellence, when our clients succeed, we all feel a sense of accomplishment, which feeds our desire to repeat it over and over. That’s a metric of not only customer satisfaction but also employee fulfillment. Remember, Graham says not all metrics are tied directly to financial numbers.
“Success is when our teams are successful at exceeding our clients’ and participants’ expectations and building great programs that achieve our clients’ goals. Equally as important, each team member needs to enjoy their time at work and feel they are contributing.”
When you look at satisfaction, fulfillment, lasting relationships, and retention (of both customers and employees), you will see the higher the metrics rise the more successful a company is from the bottom line up! For someone trying to achieve personal goals, you’ll notice each metric hit creates momentum toward the next measurement. The trick is finding the correct metrics to measure, selecting realistic goals, and following through with consistent tracking. What is your plan for measuring success?