The Right Way to Measure Productivity (and Why It’s Harder Than it Seems)
A dimension in measuring productivity is looking at the big picture or fine-grained details.
But there is a trade-off. The big picture is slow to measure and may only be visible in the long run.
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There are two extremes of evaluating productivity: Input vs. Output
Some consultants are paid when the company profits go up, but no money is owed when there is no profit.
But, early management theorists noticed just having a consultant made people work harder. A consultant can make a fortune, even though the advice is worthless. The problem with the pay-for-results consultant is that the payment comes too soon. An extended period could give better insight.
What matters most is often the hardest to track. We then measure things we don't care about with the hope that it will give some clarity. The solution:
Instead of relying on a fixed standard, regularly tweak and adapt what you measure.
Changing what you're measuring may seem like a drawback, but it really makes your work more robust. Meta-feedback on what you measure stops you from reaching a fragile solution.
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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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