Metrics, graphs and flowcharts!

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       I was at a function the other day and talked to an individual who was the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of a large corporation.  As we visited, he told me that the board had promoted him to the Chairman of the Board.  I asked who was now the CEO of his firm.  He told me who it was and said, “He can now worry about the metrics, graphs and flowcharts– he likes that better than I!”
       The more we stood and visited, the more intrigued I became!  What the chairman said was although he understood the need and value for metrics, graphs and flowcharts, he enjoyed being in the business development mode, visiting with clients and identifying new work opportunities for his firm.
       What I had expected to hear and I did not, was the fact that metrics, graphs and flowcharts were tools that the firm used, on a continual basis to measure the performance of the corporation.  I am not sure that is what I heard.
        So– the question that I ask is this– “Do you really use metrics, graphs and flowcharts in your business?  OR– do you have the staff go through the motions, however, do not use them to measure your corporate performance?”
        Nothing is more disconcerting for staff than to try and build the best management performance indicators and then nobody either look at them or use them to guide managerial decision making.  We strongly encourage our clients to develop graphical displays of managerial performance indicators for all of their measurable metrics.  If the metric is worth measuring, it is worth managing.  If you don’t believe that, then, don’t develop and track it.
         Metrics, graphs and flowcharts portray the health of the business– if you constantly collect the data, you should have a good idea of how your business is doing.  You need to share this information with the staff– they want and need to know how things are going as well.  The real benefit of metrics, graphs and flowcharts is to provide information on how the business is performing.  As a manager, you need to know that information.  As an employee or team member, they need to understand how the business is doing and what they need to do to impact the metrics in a positive direction.
        Metrics, graphs and flowcharts are important managerial decision making tools.  Use them all the time to track the effectiveness and efficiency of your organization.  Careful tracking of these tools will identify the health and efficacy of your organization.

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