Results are lagging indicators

We scour over the results.  We dig into the numbers.  We use KPI’s as metrics to make sure we are adept in our decision making.

And yet – as we push people towards the numbers, we often forget what’s behind producing those.

The people.  The employees.  The culture.

And we think by pushing more and more KPI’s and metrics, we are pushing the ball forward, and we are giving them more tools to succeed.

But is that really what the employee needs?

What if they just seek to be treated a little more human and a little less like another number?

Increasingly – I think this is the case.  I use to spend hours on end diving into the results, the financials, the KPI’s, etc.

And now?  I’ve realized the results are lagging indicators.  The real indication of success is having the right people and giving them the right tools.  And making sure they are aligned with where we want to go.

Take Virgin Airlines as an example.  Can their success be attributed to their obsessive focus and emphasis on the stats, the results, and the numbers?  Or do they start with building the right culture?  On making sure they have the right people in place?

I am always struck by how much many of the Virgin employees actually care about what they do.  Just the other day in the airport, the attendant at the gate grabbed the mic and started singing, telling jokes and having a good time.  This is unique.  It’s something that can’t be taught.  And it can leave your customers with a lasting impression.  Hell – I am writing about it.

It turns out having the right people, the right tools, and the right vision is the real indicator of how you will finish.

Not the other way around.

Instead of taking the Virgin approach – we start with the numbers.  And work our way backwards.  No wonder only 32% of workers in the US are actually engaged.

Treat your employees like you want to be treated.  Like a human.  Like a valuable, contributing member of the team.

The results will follow.

 

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