Ever heard the phrase “What gets measured gets done?” It gets tossed around when someone is trying to convince you of adding a metric to your project or scorecard. It sounds good, doesn’t it? If we can measure X, then we will achieve the performance we want.
It is not that easy. Simply measuring something does not ensure that some action will then take place. Consider a rain gauge, which measures how much rain has fallen (+/- evaporation, which may be calculated based on temperature and humidity). Nothing gets done, however, just because you have measured the rain. Nothing gets “done” by looking at the rain gauge.
So measure something that needs an action attached to it. Let’s assume you have a garden that needs water to survive and produce food for your family. In this example, the only way to ensure that “what gets measured gets done” is to program a piece of machinery to execute a set of commands based on the rain gauge’s measurement. Now you have a moisture gauge that is linked to your sprinkler system that controls the length of time the sprinkler runs based on the amount of rain received that day.
There is a lot more that goes into any process than just measurement. There are three fundamental practices that are needed for your scoreboard or dashboard to be effective:
Use the phrase “what gets measured gets done” with confidence and know that your dashboard/scoreboard will achieve the desired results – what gets measured makes sense, aligns with goals and is followed-up upon.