When Affinity’s new CEO arrived he immediately asked for more real-time data regarding financial performance. For a long time we have been satisfied with monthly reports, but like most large organizations we are moving toward real-time measures. Wal*Mart is the real-time enterprise leader.
In my personal life there are a couple of examples where real-time feedback and better performance metrics have had instantaneous impact on my behavior.
When I first got my Toyota Prius in 2005 I was glued to the display which provided me real-time feedback regarding how I drove my car effected my gas mileage. I no longer drove by the spedometer, instead I tried to maximize the use of my electric motor to stretch my gas mileage. This is a great example of how people will change their behavior when they have accurate, timely and meaningful information.
This Christmas I received a Nike+ from my wife. Once I put the sensor in my shoe, my iPod nano began to track my runs. Not only could I check my current pace while running, I could trend my runs on the well-designed Nike web site. Being a person that loves measures this has inspired me to run more. If you have a Nike+ let me know and I will invite you to a challenge. My user name is Caffeinated.
These personal life examples have made me think about what kind of impact I could have on my organizations by providing more meaningful, timely and accessible data.