One thousand Words on Metrics
Here's a quote to get you even more interested in clicking that link...
Well - will you look at that! Yareev's even willing to apply his own metric to his work. What a great example of a leader...
ConclusionIn short, I find most grasping for metrics to be a reliable metric for lack of understanding of human behavior, not only that of those who would be measured but that of those who would do the measuring.If a higher-up wants a metric about a team, say, as an input to their judgment about whether the team’s work is satisfactory, oughtn’t there be some other way to tell?And if I choose nearly any metric on someone else’s behalf, doesn’t that reveal my assumption that I know something about how they do their good work better than they do?Or worse, that I prefer they nail the metric than do something as loose and floppy as “good work”?
Here's my very special response to his request for comments.
Let’s try that againNew metric (expiration = next subhead, privacy = public): I’m 0 for 1 on satisfying conclusions to this post.I’m hardly an expert on human behavior. If I were one, rather than being passive-aggressive and obstructive, I’d have a ready step to suggest to metrics-wanters, one that they’d likely find more desirable than metrics.Instead I have to talk myself down from passo-aggro-obstructo, by which time they’ve chosen what they’ll observe and the ready step I can offer is limited to encouraging them to observe the effects of their observation.Can you give me some better ideas?
I'm wanting to +1 your whole rant, I'd like to nail it to the front doors, I'm thinking about a tattoo, but unsure where on my leader's body it should go...
I have sometimes fantasied about asking the VP that want's a new metric, if it would be good for us to add one that measured their leadership of our group - I'll call this metric Mean Time between Disruptions (MTD). MTD is calculated much like the old factory sign that said:
"its been 1023 days since we killed someone at this factory, please be safe."So let's start counting (I suggest in weeks) the time between a major disruption to the team. For this basic metric we are looking at team formation dynamics (your familiar with Tuckman's Forming, Storming, Norming, Performing) and you Mr. VP desire the P word - but it comes after 3 stages of development beyond the F word).
Let's start at the beginning and count weeks between Forming and ReForming. You know like when you move a person on/off a team. When you move the team's physical location, or when you give the team a new objective, then let's reset the clock.
The metrics I've seen range from MTD = 0 to about 20 weeks for many teams I've worked with. And Mr. VP says they desire persistent teams.
I would have put it on his site in the comments but I got a very dissatisfied error message from the system when I posted it... (wonder if he has a metric for failed comments?).
Agile in 3 Minutes a podcast that discusses a journey toward agility (each episode in exactly 3 minutes). I'm pondering... why does the magic number 3 come up in the Agile community so often? Personally I feel it has to do with the Book of Armaments, chapter 2, verse 9 to 21; because 5 is right out!
Team Metrics - Case Study
How could we measure Team Happiness?
Metrics for a Scrum Team but don't confuse that post with Scrum Team Metrics which discusses the necessary and sufficient metric Velocity.
Do you really need a Project Management Office? (PMO effectiveness metrics)