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Measure Yourself

Employees who keep track of what they do day by day are healthier, happier, and more productive than those that do not. This article featured on the Wall Street Journal and written by H. James Wilson examines how auto-analytics (computer software and smartphone apps) can help employees instant insight into what they do each day, and thereby gain better job performance. It is important, Wilson notes, that bosses encourage this behavior, not insist on it: The key word here is encouragement. It is not the same as insistence. Bosses should be careful to stay out of workers’ way, letting employees experiment at their own pace and find their own solutions. They should offer them plenty of privacy safeguards along the way. Too much managerial interference could make the programs seem like Big Brother and dissuade workers from signing on. There’s a big difference between employees  wanting  to measure themselves, and bosses  demanding  it. An example of how this self-monitoring can help: Wilson observed a situation where an employee noticed that they performed more tasks if they did individual tasks at intervals. Using this information, they were able to increase their productivity and thereby contribute more to the business, all without management needing to step in.

About Anne Grybowski

Anne is a former staff writer for CAI's Accelerating IT Success, with a degree in Media Studies from Penn State University.

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