By Phil Harwood
Regardless of the endeavor, we want to know who the winner was. Whether it’s a hockey game or chess match, the players and their fans are interested in the outcome. And the outcome is determined by the score. If there was no score being kept and no winner, everyone would lose interest. Every kid on a playground understands this. It’s human nature to keep score.
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In our personal lives, we keep score. We quantify and compare metrics that are meaningful to us. What do we compare these metrics against? Well, that’s an interesting question. Ideally, we compare ourselves to well-defined goals, which is usually a healthy approach. But often we compare ourselves to other people or to an unrealistic expectation that we place on ourselves, which is usually an unhealthy approach.
We also keep score in our work lives. But there is a healthy and an unhealthy version. The unhealthy version is where it’s all about the company or all about you. Someone wins at the expense of the other. The healthy version is where there is a holistic, balanced approach.
A healthy approach does NOT mean that no score is kept. The idea that everyone is a winner or where everyone gets a trophy for showing up was never a good one. Any kid on a playground can explain why not keeping score is a bad idea.
A holistic, balanced, healthy approach to keeping score at work involves both scores that show whether the company is winning and whether the employee is winning. Ideally, we compare metrics to goals, not against other companies or against unrealistic expectations.
The question then becomes, “What specifically are we keeping score of?” It’s a great question. I answer this question in great detail in our new course called “Keeping Score.” This course walks you through recommended scorecard metrics for leadership teams, financials, operations, and more.
If you want to win in 2022, you need to keep score.
Now go forth.
Tags: Keeping Score , Competition , Outcomes ,