Perform and Produce for Maximum Success

      In almost every workplace, the terms “production” and “performance” are heard. In some situations, performance and production may mean the same thing. But in most cases, a vast difference exists between the two. Production deals with what, and performance deals with how. Production focuses on the output of an organization, and performance deals with how the organization is productive.

     Both production and performance are essential terms to understand. You cannot adequately measure team performance or individual efficiency without them. Without adequate measurement, there is neither an easy way nor a sure way to tell if the organization is continuing to grow and move forward. That is why understanding these terms is vitally important to organizational success.

Measuring Your Productivity

     Productivity is output divided by input. For example, if a team’s output brings to the organization twice the revenue required to produce it, the team might be considered highly productive. Of course, if an organization expected a 10:1 return on its input investment, merely doubling that investment might seem hardly worthwhile.

     Performance measurements are highly dependent on the work environment and the previous experience of the organization. If a team or organization sees mediocre productivity as the norm, peak productivity might be more of a surprise than anything else. Conversely, if the team is known throughout the organization for high productivity, anything less than that standard of excellence might raise eyebrows among members of the leadership group.

     Additionally, performance standards vary depending on the nature of the organization’s business. For example, if the company generates revenue by delivering a service, the measure of performance is far more important than the measure of productivity. If the company delivers a product, on the other hand, productivity is probably more important than performance.

     Leaders and managers recognize two primary methods of measuring performance: team performance and individual performance. Team performance involves a calculation of revenue earned, divided by the number of team members. High team performance involves a balancing act between managing costs and increasing output.

     While team performance is a valuable measuring tool, each team member is still responsible for a portion of the organization’s monthly revenue. For that reason, most organizations attempt to measure individual performance as well. While team performance is often easily calculated, team member performance may be more difficult to judge because it requires a more subjective rating: capacity times commitment. Capacity is a measurement of capability, rated on a scale of 1 to 10, with 5 as the average. Capabilities include intelligence and experience. Commitment, on the other hand, is made up of an attitude, motivation, and initiative. All these factors focus on the ability to generate action and produce something for the team and the organization.

     Measuring individual performance with the formula, capacity times commitment, means that a team member with a low capacity and high commitment can still perform well. However, a team member with high capacity and low commitment may not necessarily be a model of peak performance.

You Can Do It Attitude

     Think of your own innate potential for making a contribution to the organization. On a scale of 1 to 10, where would you rank yourself on the use of your potential? If you increase the percentage of your potential that you actually use by just 10 percent, you may find that you can improve results by 50 to 100 percent. This is known as the multiplier effect –adding to the percentage of your potential you normally use will multiply your productivity and enhance your performance.

     Leaders and organizations understand that increased usage of individual potential also increases the productivity of the organization. The challenge is to effectively utilize team member potential.

     This is because increasing the utilization of team member potential is something only team members can do; the organization can only encourage the effort. Team members who have learned to use more of their innate potential are referred to as self-motivated.

     Each of us is filled with abundant potential. But it is somehow easier to see the abundance in the world around us than recognize the abundance of potential within ourselves. In fact, most people barely scratch the surface of the talents, abilities, and powers that lie within them. The need for continuous improvement is why it is so important for you and your team members to rise to a new level of excellence.

Reprinted with permission from LMI Journal Volume III, Number 11


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