Executive’s Guide to the Few Acceleration Metrics that Matter

This is the final post in a six-part series on each of the Categories of Focus suggested by the new standard Open Customer Metrics Framework (OCMF). Learn more about this modern, open framework and its five categories of focus in my first post on this topic.

OCMF suggests that executives should spend about 10% of their time on things that make a difference — the “Acceleration category”.

You know how crazy this sounds. We barely have enough time to deal with our day-to- day (and overnight) emergencies as it is.

OCMF Acceleration Category (10% focus time)

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The measures are mostly self-explanatory. Spend 10% of your time getting your measures in order. Or getting your employees engaged. Or making sure you start on some important initiatives like knowledge management/collaboration. Once you get your own house in order, spend time on cross-functional initiatives, like Time to Smile.

Here’s the intent of this category. You should be spending 10% of your time and energy making improvements instead of being in reactive mode. The idea is that as leaders, part of our job is to support growth and innovation, not just keeping the trains running on time. After all, shaping the future of your company doesn’t depend on driving the train — it is laying the track for the future.

Not sure you have the time to do this? Why do we always have time to react to things instead of getting it right with some planning up front? Think about how your current strategy is going to change when your business environment, staff and customers’ needs change. What it is costing you not to do it now? If you don’t address this issue now, what will the consequences be down the road?

While I read this particular book came after the OCMF was published, the following excerpt from Machine, Platform, Crowd: Harnessing Our Digital Future by economists Andrew McAfee and Erik Brynjolfsson supports the principles of OCMF, and in particular the Acceleration category.

“We do want to point out two consistent features of the management styles we’ve observed at the successful and technologically sophisticated companies we’ve worked with. The first is egalitarianism, especially of ideas. While these companies have a clear organizational structure and management hierarchy, they also have a practice of listening to ideas even if they come from junior or low-level people, and even if they originate far from the R&D department or other parts of the core.”

“In addition to egalitarianism, and often in support of it, second-machine-age companies have high levels of transparency: they share more information more widely than has been typical.”

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