The test of a good measure:
Does this measure help us understand and improve performance?
All arbitrary measures – targets, service levels, activity, budget and so on – fail this test. Managing with arbitrary measures is like driving your car while looking through the rear-view mirror.
Actual measures, like: end-to-end times, percentage one-stop, percentage on date-as-required, are called ‘capability’ measures and pass this test.
Switching from arbitrary measures to capability measures requires hard work on the part of managers. It is to move from rear-view mirror measures to predictive measures – measures looking forward.
While managers ‘know’ how to ‘manage’ with the former, they have no experience of working with the latter.