What and why do we measure?

If we were to have a brainstorming session with different groups in an organization I am thinking we will see a lot of different answers. Depending on your role and/or position you will have different perspectives, needs and beliefs and you will want to measure on different things.

Many people are against measurements because it often is misused or used in wrong ways. In my opinion measuring is for learning and development, and should be limited to the minimum that you need to get the outcomes your business needs. Another very important aspect is that we do define what we are measuring before we measure and understand why we do it instead of tweaking numbers later on to make them look good. If you see this, it is a good reason to start asking questions.

In my opinion lead time is one of the measures we can use that will help us to achieve better business outcomes and faster learning from our customers. if we focus on shortening the lead time.

Measuring on lead time will trigger a lot of discussions which I think are healthy and can help people agree on a common goal.

What do we need to think about if we are to measure lead time?

  • What is our commitment point?
  • When does the clock start ticking?
  • What is our actual flow of work?
  • What type of work do we have?
  • Where do we have waiting time?
  • What is our flow efficiency?
  • How can we increase flow?
  • How can we reduce dependencies?

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