Monday, March 18, 2013

Know the Difference Between Your Data and Your Metrics
by Jeff Bladt and Bob Filbin  |

The following excerpts should encourage you to read this article. Deciding on the metrics you measure vs. the data you collect is critical. Be sure the metric you chose REALLY drives the results you want.

We were concerned with the wrong metric. A metric contains a single type of data…..A successful organization can only measure so many things well and what it measures ties to its definition of success….there is a difference between numbers and numbers that matter. This is what separates data from metrics.
You can't pick your data, but you must pick your metrics… 
…Keep in mind that all metrics are proxies for what ultimately matters…Metrics are what you measure. And what you measure is what you manage to…organizations become their metrics….In the business world, we talk about the difference between vanity metrics and meaningful metrics. Vanity metrics are like dandelions - they might look pretty, but to most of us, they're weeds, using up resources, and doing nothing for your property value…. 
Metrics are only valuable if you can manage to them 
Good metrics have three key attributes: their data are consistent, cheap, and quick to collect. A simple rule of thumb: if you can't measure results within a week for free (and if you can't replicate the process), then you're prioritizing the wrong ones. There are exceptions, but they are rare….Organizations can't control their data, but they do control what they care about.

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