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Four Ways Business Must Change to Adapt to an Evolving World

shutterstock_386999542Right along with mammals and mankind, business is constantly changing …and at what seems to be an ever-increasing pace. According to a noted business advisor, complacent business leaders risk extinction by sticking with outdated assumptions of technology-enabled practices, human behavior and the very meaning of success.

According to Bruce Temkin, founder and president of The Temkin Group, in order for your business to not end up like a dinosaur, management techniques must change to what he calls Modernized Leadership Actions and a shift from Measure and Track to Observe and Improve, quoting Einstein (as in Albert) as his inspiration:

“Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted counts.”

As experts in counting, this got our attention.

But actually, his main thrust is not discounting measurement, but in a more personalized and empathetic application of the results.

Here are his four key recommendations for how business leaders should change their approach in integrating metrics into their business model for today’s world:

  • Look positively forward. Metrics often show how an organization has performed during some previous timeframe, but what you really care about is how it will get better in the future. Make sure that your discussions with people are focused on what the organization can learn in order to improve, not on blaming people for the problems that caused a poor score.
  • Encourage the right behaviors. If you want your organization to make improvements, then nurture the employee behaviors that will deliver better results. So celebrate employees who are doing the right things, even when the metrics aren’t great.
  • Build operational empathy. If you want your employees to do the right things, then they should feel as if you know their environment. Rather than having employees just see you commenting on metrics from afar, set aside time to regularly get involved in different parts of the organization. Ask employees how they think the company can improve. This will help you understand when to “back off” reacting too strongly to the metrics and let employees know that numbers aren’t everything.
  • Enable continuous improvement. Instead of using measurements as a pure grading system, use them to identify places for improvement, and always ask: what have we learned and how can we get better?Your organization needs to have an ongoing improvement cycle that is at least at the same pace as your measurement system, otherwise metrics will only lead to frustration.

The Takeaway: Observe your organization and focus on improvements. For the complete report, go here.

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