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What gets measured and publicized gets acted on!

50/50 sales reported on the giant TV screen
50/50 sales reported on the giant TV screen

As a die-hard Calgary Flames fan, I was excited to be at my first National Hockey League regular season home game a few weeks ago.  It was great to partake in the usual rituals – cheers and boos, hot dogs and mini-donuts, noise-making and flag-waving.  And of course, the 50/50 draw!  This great tradition is a fund-raiser for the Flames Foundation for Life, a charitable organization that seeks to give back to the community.  For a mere $2, you can buy a ticket giving you a chance to win 50% of the total money raised that evening with the remaining 50% going to the charity.  This 50/50 draw has been running for as long as I can remember, and at every game (despite the fact that I haven’t won yet) I’ve happily forked over a few bills for a handful of tickets.  However, just in the last year, there has been a significant change in how the draw is administered.  Previously, ticket hawkers would sell tickets all evening, and then during the final period, the amount of the total prize would be announced over the public address system just as the winning ticket was drawn from the barrel.  Now, the tickets are sold in the stands using hand-held devices, and as the transactions happen, a running tally of total sales in real-time is reported on the giant TV screen in the middle of the arena.  The result: in previous years, total sales would rarely go over $20,000.  But ever since the new system was implemented, total sales routinely top $40,000.  In fact, at the game I just attended, the final reckoning came in at over $57,000!

There’s an old leadership adage – what gets measured gets done.  I’ve always advocated an extended version – what gets measured and publicized gets acted on – and these 50/50 results just serve to prove my point!  As a leader, you no doubt have performance metrics of some kind for your department or organization, but are you routinely broadcasting your ongoing results and making them visible by posting them on a bulletin board or circulating them via email?  It doesn’t matter whether you’re tracking total sales, percentage of returns, invoice accuracy, customer survey scores, or safety statistics, the important question is: are you making your results public, loudly and frequently?  If not, then you most certainly should!  Remember, what gets measured and advertised gets acted on!

Do you have performance metrics that you track and publicize?  Why or why not?

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