According to Charles Coonradt (2007, p. 44), "Successful managers have the capacity of generating greater result with the same amount of resource, or the same result with less resource." A major difference between good and poor performers is feedback. Successful managers understand the "results to resources ratio" and use it to measure productivity.
A winning football quarterback wouldn't use the same set of plays repeated time after time in a football game. Instead he varies plays depending on the situation at hand. Similarly a successful entrepreneur adapts workflow based on the information he or she gets.
Several axioms govern feedback. PresidentThomas S. Monson of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints declared: "When performance is measured, performance improves. When performance is measured and reported back, the rate of improvement accelerates."
Coonradt adds two other axioms:
1. Increasing the frequency of feedback improves the quality and quantity of performance.
2. When feedback is illustrated on charts and graphs, the impact is even greater.
These apply in business, but also in personal goal setting and performance. Go beyond simply planning to report back frequently on performance.
Coonradt's book is called "The game of work: How to enjoy work as much as play." It's available at www.gameofwork.com.