Ask a Coach: Culture based KPIs

Dear Recruitment Coach, I can see you regularly address the performance appraisal process and constantly stress that KPIs must be measurable.

This is easy enough when it comes to measuring sales success or in instances where connections can be made to figure-based outcomes.

However, I want to set KPIs for my employees based around how well they exercise our high-energy culture, everyday in the workplace.

I am finding that measuring this is very difficult and it becomes hard to judge and discuss their performance in this area! Any suggestions?  Leah, Technology, Brisbane

Hi Leah,

This is a great question. As it is, many managers settle on their gut feel, relying almost solely on their intuition to make the call much as they (erroneously) do in interviews, with a common result of creating an environment where perceptions of favouritism and unfairness arise.

This leads to increased office politics and the fostering of a culture based around pleasing the boss rather than growing the business as a team. The result is that a well-intentioned plan actually achieves the opposite result from the one intended.

While the concept of heaving great attitudes and a great culture is something we all want, as business people we must accompany that intent with the benefits we expect them to bring – simply, would we invest in it if there is no return on that investment?

The answer might be that as employers we should try to create happiness and fulfil our social obligations, but to justify making a serious commitment of spending time, effort and money there should also be a measurable financial return.

Let’s start by looking specifically at your situation, where you want to continue to develop your high energy culture. A common benefit to arise from a high energy culture is the attraction of innovative and creative people, both as staff and customers.

You may also expect to see low absenteeism, high levels of punctuality, teamwork and team development, engagement and discretional effort, along with a fast work pace and an aggressive growth strategy – after all, that energy should be directed somewhere productive. Now let’s attach some measurement methods to those areas.

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