One of the critical competencies for managers and supervisors is managing the business performance of their departments/sections/units. More often than not, this is one area where coaching and mentoring is much needed.
One basic approach that can go a long way is to learn more about and apply the use of SMART Objectives, Key Result Areas, Key Performance Indicators, and Targets. While attending workshops are helpful, reading available materials and books are effective ways to learn as well. Even more effective is to try out the few KPIs that are most relevant in terms of aligning a department’s objectives with the overall strategic objectives and strategies of the company.
Simply put, a Key Performance Indicator (KPI) is a measure of how well something, an objective, is achieved and gives valuable feedback on whether performance is on track or not so that the manager and team can take appropriate action to get back on track.
Not having clearly defined KPIs is like driving without a clear destination and directions to guide you. Don’t leave results and outcomes to chance. Plan the work and then work the plan. Always have measures and get top management sign off.
Here are some useful resources to get you started on your journey of learning by doing and experimentation.
- KPI Library (Service Now) is “a crowd-sourced repository of Key Performance Indicator Definitions. Since 2007 members have suggested over 6500+KPI templates and examples, and participated in KPI benchmark surveys to create the worlds largest library for KPI information.”
- KPI Library (Bernard Marr) is a collection of Key Performance Indicator Definitions “based on our extensive global experience we have picked the most insightful and relevant Key Performance Indicators in key business areas.” Many other resources are available.
- Free Media for book owners of David Parmenter‘s book Key Performance Indicators: Developing, Implementing, and Using Winning KPIs, Third Edition.
Here’s an article if you would like to discover more resources on KPIs: Finding the Right KPIs – 5 KPI Libraries That Are Key to Your Performance.
If the subject of KPIs excites you, there are many resources to study and learn from, and help you equip yourself and your team with the knowledge and skills to effectively plan, execute, monitor and control, and realign business performance.