There are at least three good reasons why your authenticity as a performance measurement (PM ) practitioner really matters. Firstly, people need quite a bit of coaching before they'll trust PM. Secondly, you're going to need an energy source to persist until people stop resisting measuring. Thirdly, inspiration works much better than edict at engaging people to measure. Your authenticity boosts all these things.
Want to know how to boost your authenticity?
What do you BELIEVE about PM?
Why do you believe we should measure performance? What do you believe a performance measure really is (and is not)? Do you believe it's more important to measure people, or processes? Your authenticity comes from well grounded beliefs, not just adopting someone else's views (not even mine!).
A sample of my beliefs about performance measures are:
- the purpose of performance measures is to focus us, to give us feedback and to be a fulcrum to leverage faster performance improvement
- milestones, like "implement Project X by December 2011", are not performance measures
- measures are tools to help people improve performance, not tools to measure people's performance
What do you KNOW about PM?
How many of the popular PM frameworks do you have a working knowledge of, like the Balanced Scorecard or Performance Prism? What are your favourite performance measure resources, which you look to regularly to grow your knowledge? Do you know what the most common struggles are that people have with performance measurement (PM)? Who are the authors that have most influenced your views of PM?
For me, I relentlessly continue to grow my knowledge about PM. In fact, that's one of the reasons I love my Measures & More Mastermind Program so much - I get to personally interview and learn from the world's thought leaders on PM and related subjects.
What are your SKILLS in PM?
Do you know how to make a seemingly immeasurable strategy or goal or objective measurable? Can you design meaningful performance measures when it's not obvious what the right measures are? Can you define the details needed to ensure that a performance measure is implemented as it was intended to be? Can you design engaging and sensible reports and dashboards?
Much of my own PM skill developed through an eclectic mix of training and experience, including post-graduate study in statistics, quality management and process improvement, neuro linguistic programming, testing and experimenting. These are the roots from which PuMP and the Performance Measure Blueprint have evolved.
What is your EXPERIENCE in PM?
Have you got a journal where you record your personal learning and insights in PM? How have you tailored other people's approaches to work better for your organisation? Have you got some measurement stories or anecdotes from your personal experience that you use to share PM learning and insights with others?
I create my own mottos, which distill some of the most important lessons I've had in performance measurement into simple, shareable reminders:
- patterns, not points (don't compare this month to last month)
- useful, not just interesting (don't measure it unless it really matters)
- engagement matters more than excellence (a perfect measure is useless if no-one owns it)
What is your PASSION for PM?
Why do you care about performance measurement? Do you feel compelled to make a real difference in the world? Do you love to help people get focused on goals that matter? What's your personal vision for performance measures in your organisation, or in your career?
My personal passion for performance measures comes from a love of clarity and focus, an intense desire to know rather than assume, a disdain for the waste that comes from uninformed decisions. And my vision is to professionalise the Performance Measurement Practitioner role so we can work together to make performance measurement a natural part of doing business.
Authenticity = Beliefs + Knowledge + Skill + Experience + Passion
When you're authentic, people are drawn to you. They listen to you, they seek your advice, they ask for your help, they do what you suggest. Authenticity is of paramount importance to every Performance Measurement Practitioner.
Where could you deepen your own performance measurement authenticity? Pick one thing, do it, and see how you feel, and how others respond to you.