“If you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it.” This philosophy, popularized by management guru Peter Drucker, speaks to the importance of measuring business performance in order to set business practice. Since the early ‘90s, organizational leaders have often relied on a tool known as the balanced scorecard to capture a blend of financial and non-financial measures to help chart performance against desired business outcomes. Most commonly, this tool is meant for business leaders, but it is an idea that any person can use to measure and reflect on overall progress against personal goals.
A balanced scorecard in this context features metrics representing elements that are the most significant in achieving an organization’s overall vision. Leaders periodically assess the metrics and when an imbalance or notable drop in performance occurs, they will reflect and address the situation.
Take that concept and apply it your own success criteria. Ask yourself, what do you want out of life? Personally, my ultimate goals are to be happy, to be a great mother and provider and to own my own destiny. To illustrate this concept further, I’ll share what my own scorecard might look like:
Key Drivers of Success
|As a leader and entrepreneur, I am constantly re-evaluating the business plan. Are we flexible? Are we nimble? Are we moving to where the market needs us to go? As a professional, I am considering whether or not I’m accomplishing the vision I set out for myself and for my team. Am I providing the appropriate level of leadership?|
|Family||As a wife and mother, I want my family to be happy and healthy. I ask myself, do we have meaningful activities that continue to develop us? Are we working as a unit to provide support for overall success? Are we present and in the moment with each other?|
|Philanthropy||Both professionally and personally, I consider philanthropy a major factor in overall success. Am I making an impact to organizations I feel impassioned to succeed?|
|Friends & Professional Network||Over time, friends and colleagues become like an extended family. It’s important to keep in touch. Am I maintaining and growing my network? Am I giving as much as I’m taking?|
|Personal Wellness||Whether it’s physical, mental, or emotional wellness, we all need to be vigilant about sustaining positive personal wellness. Am I maintaining the right balance? Am I happy where I am? What should I be doing differently?|
In all of this, it’s not defining the scorecard that is hard. It’s defining the balance. No matter where I go, whether speaking to business leaders, employees, parents, educators – even my own children – balance is the Holy Grail. Most of us struggle with the concept, but in the end, it’s about choices: What will I do? What won’t I do? And what blend will allow me to achieve my goals?
Creating a personal scorecard allows us to visualize the balance we seek across all the important elements of our lives. Consider it a monthly, quarterly, or annual exercise – whatever works for you. It will help you manage. Because, as the saying goes, “You can’t manage what you don’t measure.”