Sometimes we get carried away. We have good intentions and set good goals with a strong action plan that is specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, time-based, and all of that. But then as we are working the plan, we go just a bit overboard in measuring results.
As we approach a new year, this is the time that most leaders reflect on what was accomplished in the past twelve months and what is needed for the next twelve. It is crucial that we do this. What did we do really well and what specific steps did we take to do it? How can we replicate the performance and reach even higher? Conversely, where did we struggle or even fail to succeed? How can we minimize those shortcomings in the future? How can we improve? These are all great questions to ask our team members and us as leaders.
Where a lot of us fail, however, is when we overdo it. We start measuring every little detail about every element of our performance and we lose sight of what is truly important and end up confusing priorities. We don’t step back to ensure that what we measure is really crucial to our results. We need to set our sights on the absolute top priorities and not get lost in the weeds. Certainly, this can be extremely difficult to do with competing interests and departmental goals, but leaders of organizations must clearly set over-arching and common objectives that tie everything together and these must be communicated and validated in the simplest ways possible so all team members can understand their roles in those common expectations.
It is easy to overdo the measuring. It is extremely difficult to keep things simple, but this is a key behavior of winning leaders.
Here is your challenge this year-end:
Determine what is really important. (Top 3 things)
How did you do this year (On only the top three)?
What behaviors created the results? (Look for performance gaps here)
What simple and minimal measurements should be in place to deliver clear indicators around behavior and results?
What pre-determined check-in schedule should be established for monitoring performance and giving feedback?
Stick with the top three most important goals, keep the measurement and accountability process simple…and don’t overdo it!
…And have a happy and winning New Year!