Business owners and leaders….if you are astute enough to set up Key Performance Indicators and targets for your team so that they understand what is expected of them and to stretch them to perform at a higher level than they thought possible, then you’ve done a great job but you are missing the vital piece of the puzzle.
If the KPI is hitting a sales target, then the steps towards that might be managing the pipeline, nurturing the prospects and making 100 sales calls a week. For the leader, the KPI being hit and bonus released seems like the end of the process but, for the team member, hitting the KPI is not the end of the process but just another step towards their own goals.
As an effective leader we need to align our teams not only with the KPIs but with what that means for them personally, we need to ask team individually these questions:-
How will they have grown their skills?
What opportunities will that open up?
How will that affect their finances?
Projecting forward 5 or 10 years of outstanding performance what will life look like?
Where will they be living?
What holidays will they have?
What car will they drive?
It’s important to remember that the KPIs are a piece of a jigsaw for the owner that will build their business but, for the team member, it is a piece of a very different jigsaw, one that builds their lives. If we can understand that and help our team build their jigsaw then they will connect with their WHY. Once they’ve connected with their why, they will be able to commit to achieving goals for you because they are also goals for them.
Now, when the team member looks forward at a daunting sales target, they see it as a means to that dream family holiday, or bigger house, rather than something they need to do to stop you sacking them. My guess is that they’ll perform exponentially better with that mindset.
When people are old and grey and reflecting on their life they won’t be thinking “I’m glad I hit my KPI in 2016” they’ll be thinking “I’m really glad my boss inspired me to make a success of myself, because I have reaped the rewards and shared them with my family”
I invite you, as a leader, to be remembered in that way.