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Every Force Has an Equal and Opposite Reaction

The winter Olympics is over and many athletes have achieved amazing results.

In the world of sport it is natural to measure the accomplishment. Sometimes the measurement is in time, other times it is in the number of goals or points scored. The way that the sport is measured is also the basis for how the athletes perform. The ice hockey player does not get any extra points for performing some nice moves on their skates. The only thing that counts is the number of goals that they can score. Similarly the slalom skier does not get any extra points for going downhill in a certain style. The only thing that matters is that they are faster than the other skiers.In other sports points are accumulated for clean and nice jumps, pirouettes, and flips. They do not have to be faster than any one else or score any goals. In the world of sport it is clear what counts.

In our business world – it is not! Or maybe it is for some people, those that believe that the only thing that counts is the profit and loss account. That is important, but it is not everything. There are other values as well. It is important to find those values and to measure them.

People act as though they are being measured, just as the athletes do. If you measure people for speed, that is what you get. If you measure them for low cost or ability to save the budget, that is what you get, and if you measure them for correctly filled out reports, you will get that.

The issue therefore, is that you will find that there are things that the people will not do, as they focus on delivering what you measure them on. If you like to push the business in one direction by measuring the progress, you must also be careful about the effects that this will have on the things that you do not measure. Otherwise you might have success in one area and failure in another, an area that you might not have foreseen at all.

It is important that you conduct a survey of all the things that matter in your business – and why not use the balanced scorecard as a basis? The dimensions used in the balanced scorecard will help you to get a perspective on areas that are important to measure and control.

Measurement is important and at the same time it is a very powerful tool. That is why it is very important that you spend time drawing a correct map of goals and measurements. A map that takes into consideration all the different forces that you unleash when you start to measure more meticulously.

As I have worked extensively through the years with helping organizations measure what is important, and I can therefore also offer you help. Contact me as soon as possible and we will schedule an appointment.

Until the next time, happy measuring!

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To you and your organization’s excellence.