Mindful measurement

While businesses do need metrics to measure their performance, performance indicators do not fit perfectly with a specific metric and should not be artificially forced to fit a measurement model.

Principles to help measure performance in a mindful way.

  • People-first management. Relationships cannot be measured or easily defined.
  • Metacognition. Periodically reflect on the way your current measurement systems impact the way you think and work.
  • Non-measurable performance indicators. Innovation, creativity, enthusiasm, expertise, etc. can't be measured.
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Problem Solving


"What gets measured gets managed" is not only erroneously attributed to famous management consultant Peter Drucker, but it is also flawed.

The idea possibly came from a paper published in 1956 by V.F. Ridgway. He was pointing out that we should be more careful when using quantitative measures. The quote of journalist Simon Caulkin read: "What gets measured gets managed - even when it's pointless to measure and manage it, and even if it harms the purpose of the organisation to do so."

Blind measurement can lead to problems at the individual, corporate, and societal levels.

  • The wrong metrics can cause unintended consequences. For example, when the British government offered a bounty for every dead cobra in Delhi, enterprising started breeding cobra snakes to get the prize, leading to more cobras.
  • People are more than numbers. Much of a company's success relies on human factors that are sometimes impossible to measure, such as enthusiasm.
  • When a measure becomes a target, it ceases to be a good measure. When a goal is set, measures can distort incentives.

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Why simplicity?

Simple thinking can lead to safer plans, better communication, and easier execution. The power of simplicity is apparent throughout history, where strategists and artists alike strived for simplicity. Let's look at a few examples!

The power of simplicity: how to manage our complexity bias - Ness Labs



The belief that societies continue to decline is often linked with rosy retrospection - believing that the past was better and the future more negative.

Declinism can cloud your judgement and steer you toward bad decisions.

Declinism: how rosy retrospection impacts decision-making - Ness Labs


Ordinary and altered states of consciousness

Altered states of consciousness can only be defined if there is an understanding of an ordinary state of consciousness.

While scientists can't agree on a clear definition, altered states of consciousness are nevertheless essential to understanding the human mind.

Altered states of consciousness: the elusiveness of the mind - Ness Labs


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