#74 How Many KPIs Do You Need?

July 19, 2011 by Stacey Barr

I’m going to share with you my secret formula for the right number of KPIs or performance measures that you truly need, so you can stop drowning in overwhelm…

a hand reaching out of a pile of paperwork

STEP 1: Stocktake your current KPIs against your goals.

KPIs shouldn’t float around unattached to goals. They are evidence of progress toward goals. Get a list of your goals, and list of your KPIs or measures, and link them to each other.

If everything links to everything, you’ve gone too far. Focus on linking KPIs or measures to the goals they are the most direct and strongest evidence of. If any KPIs or measures aren’t strong evidence of anything, toss them.

STEP 2: Choose your three priority goals.

If you only have three goals, that’s great. If you have more than three goals, that’s not great. If you expect to achieve any of them with excellence (and why would you aim to achieve a goal without excellence?) you have to pare it down to three.

Why? Watch the second video on this page //tinyurl.com/threegoals. You can move onto the other priorities after you achieve your three WIGS (wildly important goals).

STEP 3: For each priority goal, have no more than three KPIs.

Sometimes a goal only needs one measure or KPI. Excellent – that will keep it simple. But you can sometimes need two or three KPIs or measures for any one goal, for example, when you need more than one stakeholder’s perspective on the goal. But no more than three KPIs or measures per goal!

And ta da! That’s how many KPIs you need right now.

TAKE ACTION: Very simply, follow those three steps to the letter!


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