I have been doing a little work recently in relation to productivity and performance measures.  The thought struck me after trying to construct appropriate measures for a particular organisation in a particular situation that the measures we use are not as important as the fact that we use measures to track progress against strategy and ensure we remain ‘on mission’.

Of course the measures must demonstrate progress in the right direction for our key success factors – but remember the Pareto effect – we can probably get 80% of the effectiveness of a measurement regime with 20% of the effort.

i am not advocating ‘abdication’ – just careful use of resources and broad targeting rather than surgical precision.  Get people moving against plans – in broadly the right directions and with some momentum and motivation – and the detailed results will look after themselves.