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How Do You Measure Success?

Peter Drucker
“You can’t manage what you can’t measure.”

Peter Drucker

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How Do You Measure Success?

How Do You Measure Success?

https://mfishbein.com/how-do-you-measure-success/

mfishbein.com

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Key Ideas

Discover Your Values

Being able to achieve a success metric is hard, but knowing which metric to achieve is even more important. Discover what you value and choose your own metrics for success, otherwise, your environment will dictate it for you, which could be unfulfilling for you.

Work towards your own idea of success and don’t let “FOMO” make you feel like a failure because you’re not meeting someone else’s metrics for success.

Peter Drucker

Peter Drucker

“There is nothing quite so useless as doing with great efficiency, something that should not be done at all.”

Compare Yourself Only To Yourself

Social comparison bias explains that our judgments are often influenced by comparisons to other people. A benchmark makes it easier to make a judgment, but it will not necessarily be a reasonable or more accurate judgment.

Don’t measure yourself by what you’ve accomplished, but rather by what you should have accomplished with your abilities. True success is attained only through knowing you did your best to achieve your potential. 

John Wooden

John Wooden

“True success is attained only through the satisfaction of knowing you did everything within the limits of your ability to become the very best that you are capable of being.”

Measure What’s Hard To Measure

It’s easy to measure financial success. You can see a number in your bank account and compare it to others’ bank accounts.

But many important things for a satisfying life, like mental and physical health, relationships, freedom, and fulfillment are harder to measure. Nevertheless, you should incorporate some qualitative analysis into how you measure success.

Measure Results Over The Long-Term

Success usually takes many failures to achieve. So don’t use immediate tangible results to define success. Consider what you’ve learned and how it will help you succeed in the future.

Don’t define yourself solely by your current circumstances. Consider who you are becoming.

Measure Outcomes, Not Proxies

It’s easy to measure proxies for success. Secondary metrics don’t always translate to business results and care must be taken so they don’t become a proxy for actually knowing and fulfilling your customers’ needs.

Do what helps you achieve success and measure success in terms of the outcomes you’re trying to achieve.

Learn And Iterate

Dynamic inconsistency is a situation where the best plan for the future is not optimal when that future period arrives. We and our environments change and so must our concept of success.

Change how you measure success as you change as a person, else you risk wasting your efforts and even failure.

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Measuring Employee Productivity
Measuring Employee Productivity

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The Old Productivity Formula

The basic productivity formula(productivity= output divided by input) worked well in the industrial age as the output and input were clearly defined and measurable.

Today’s leaders need innovative solutions to measure and improve productivity in a knowledge-based workplace, as the measurement of output and input is not what it was.

Quality And Quantity

While assigning value to the output of knowledge workers, we cannot simply measure the output like before.

Coders and doctors cannot be measured by the hour, as their output is not uniform or consistent every hour.

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SMART goal-setting framework

Set goals that are:

  • Specific: It will be easier to see what you need to accomplish.
  • Measurable: How will you know when you’ve achieved your goal?
  • Attaina...
Locke and Latham’s 5 Principles of Goal-Setting
  1. Clarity: clear goals help with understanding the task at hand.
  2. Challenge: the goal should be challenging enough to prove motivating, but not impossible to achieve. 
  3. Commitment: involve your team in the goal-setting process.
  4. Feedback: measure your progress and seek advice.
  5. Task complexity: be careful in adding too much complexity to your goals as it can impact morale, productivity, and motivation.
Objectives & Key Results (OKRs) framework for goal setting
  • Objectives – This is what you hope to accomplish. Objectives usually take the form of broad goals that are not measurable (that’s what the Key Results section is for).
  • Key Results – Based on objectives, the key results are almost always defined with a specific number.

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Completion bias

It's where your brain specifically seeks the hit of dopamine you get from crossing off small tasks and ignores working on larger, more complex ones.

Small wins and motivation

Out of all the things that can boost our mood and motivation, the single most important is making progress on meaningful work.

Just like we love crossing small tasks off our to-do list, being able to see that we’re even one step closer to a big goal is a huge motivator. The problem is that these “small wins” are hard to measure.

“Most of us make advances small and large every single day, but we fail to notice them because we lack a method for acknowledging our progress. This is a huge loss.”

“Most of us make advances small and large every single day, but we fail to notice them because we lack a method for acknowledging our progress. This is a huge loss.”

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