You’ve done the hard work of identifying your key metrics. You also have your analytics tools running. After spending time and money setting them, are they taken seriously? Here are signs that you need to tighten your monitoring process and tips on how to improve.
(Haven’t picked your priority metric yet? Here’s how.)
1. Direction Has Changed Mid-Flight
Sometimes, it’s ok. It’d be unwise to pursue a goal that became irrelevant. Market conditions can change. The road you’re building might be leading to a destination that’s not anymore there.
Most of the time, we’re just tempted to tap out just because we don’t want to report a loss. The goal stays relevant, but ego takes over.
How does this manifest? Deadlines are moved and it’s ok. The goals change before the deadline, and the failure isn’t taken accounted for.
The next time you’re to change your targets in the middle of the journey, consider the following. Own the failure if any and recognize the changes in market conditions.
Related: see how to document and track your metrics with Trello.
2. No Schedule for Reporting the Status
There’s no expected time to report. If it wasn’t committed in the beginning, it’s likely that it won’t be reported at all. Why even set a goal if it won’t be celebrated?
This takes off the pressure from performing and reaching smaller milestones. So tempting, but that lowers your likelihood of success.
There are 2 types of schedules: check-ins in the middle and by the deadline. Say, your deadline is by the end of the quarter, definitely report the status by then. Since that time frame is very long, also set goal posts in the middle. Report progress status in an expected recurring schedule, e.g. every Friday.
3. No One is Expecting a Status Report
Mark (Zuckerberg) put out monthly active users, as the number both internally he held everyone to… It was the number he made the whole world hold Facebook to, as a number that we cared about. – Alex Schultz, Facebook VP Growth
4. It’s Hard Say the ‘Lose Criteria’
Due to ambiguity, the criteria is negotiable. You and your accountability buddies haven’t agreed on what a “lose” (or a “win”) exactly look like. Without a firm objective to decide the success, it’s easy to modify the rules. Feeling good is always beats inconvenience, so tighten your rules. Place criteria that won’t be bent during the review.
Yes, you could’ve set a review schedule with specific people, but make sure you know what you’re watching for. It’s very easy to loosen up the criteria, especially if you want to feel good. Make sure that winning is more important than your ego.
Practice one of these tips today. It will be a shame if you know what milestone you should get to, but fail to follow through.
Got a follow up question? Ask me on Twitter.