Stop changing your business strategy! Change what you measure instead

- July 28, 2016 2 MIN READ

Often we chop and change our business strategy because we think they’re where we’re going wrong. A lot of the time, however, we’re actually just measuring wrong outcomes.

Everyone is out there searching for the magic bullet, the one big thing that will change your business, well I’m going to give it to you … it’s called consistency and if I were to take it a step further I would say it’s doing the right activities on a consistent basis.

Critical drivers are actionable steps that need to be repeated consistently (daily, weekly, monthly and some may even be as occasional as quarterly, every six months and annually). Today we are going to focus on weekly critical drivers because this is where you will see the best results the quickest.

Let’s look at the example around a goal based on increasing sales, you decide that the business strategy you are going to include in your plan is telemarketing, so you hire a telemarketer and say to them you need to make at least 20 cold calls a day. At the end of each day you ask the telemarketer if they have made the calls, to which they reply they have, the problem is that when you measure your sales volumes you notice that your sales haven’t gone up.

This is where most people go wrong; they decide that they have made a mistake in their plan and that they have selected the wrong business strategy, when in fact they have selected the wrong critical drivers to measure.

With a little more critical thinking we realise that the critical drivers in this particular business, are face to face meetings with potential prospects. We now change the critical drivers for the telemarketer to; two face to face meetings need to be booked each day.

Well now a couple of things happen, first we have now made the telemarketer more accountable, they now need to produce a result and are not just being responsible for their actions, the number of calls made.

Want more articles like this? Check out the business productivity section.

The conversation would go something along the lines of, you need to book two well-qualified face to face meetings per day (again well qualified can be clearly defined). You are going to need to make anything between 2 to 200 calls per day to achieve this.

The flow on effect from this, is that one of the Key Performance Indicators for the telemarketer is the number of appointments booked, which now moves into one of the critical drivers for the sales person which would be the number of face to face meeting held per day and what their conversion rate is, resulting in an increase in sales.