We become what we measure

This is as much a post on Analytics as one on Design. It is about how an organization can design to be better at what it does by choosing the right measures of success.

This in itself gives me a high, because it’s a personal insight.

KPIs in Analytics

In the Analytics Process, we start off by identifying the Key Performance Indicators that we care about.

These would be drilled down to specific, measurable metrics.

As a business, then I would organize a fair amount of management bandwidth into driving this metric up. Since, it’s oriented around the KPIs that the organization cares about.

A truly data-driven organization would obsess over the metric, question the data … eek out insights based on their findings. That’s analytics gold right there.

The Insight

I chanced upon this Kindle Book, which is aptly titled – What we measure we become. It’s on Kindle Unlimited, so I could read the book for free (yayy!).

The cool part of the Little Book was that it can be applied in Career Design as well. However, since one of the many hats I wear is an Analysts’ hat, I started asking myself this question –

What will happen, if the organization indeed orients itself towards the main set of KPIs

The organization would change … an institution focused on revenues would be extremely Sales oriented. An organization focused on impact would be oriented around change. An organization focused on innovation would be oriented around ideas.

So how does this help?

Well, often at times, consultants and analysts are in that enviable position of influencing decisions by providing the right set of reports and insights.

By focusing on the right set of metrics, one can orient the right things.

For e.g – Why don’t we obsess over the conversion rate? Why should it be in single digits (2-5%) … Why can’t we design better user experiences to drive this conversion rate to above 50%?

I am not talking about Conversion Rate Optimization, I am talking about more fundamental changes. This is not the domain of the folks who make the landing pages or the marketing team who designs the campaigns … it’s the responsibility of the entire organization.

This is where the right set of KPIs will tie the organization around focusing on a singular goal … hence, we become what we measure :)