Measuring Success – Are you aware of the metrics within your particular field/vocation/etc.?

February 26, 2015 § Leave a comment

The ability to measure success is an important part of any goal or aspiration. If there are not measurables, you will not only preform at a lower level, but you will also miss out on the important psychological benefits of feeling accomplished. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Figure out what ‘success’ looks like. Oftentimes our idea of success and how it is actually measured in our field is very different. For example, the only real measure of success in academia is publishing. Teaching, getting good grades, attending meetings, etc. are all things that you must balance, but at the end of the day publishing reigns supreme. See Cal Newport’s extensive post about success in academia.
  2. Take it from an intangible idea and turn it into a concrete goal. “Doing well in school” –> “Getting a 3.7 gpa.” “Acquiring new clients” –> “Getting 6 new clients by the end of April.”
  3. Turn the goal into actionable steps. What will it take to accomplish that goal?
  4. Turn the steps into monthly, weekly, and daily meters. Accomplish those, move onto the next, and you’re goal will be attained. Think Covey’s big rocks constantly (Here’s a video that illustrates the concept if you’ve never heard of it).
  5. Ruthlessly cut out (or minimize/optimize/automate) unnecessary responsibilities that feel productive, but don’t really result in measurable success. Examples include responding to email, side projects, meetings, etc.
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