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Boost your Personal Performance – Link LEAN Principles to the Daily Life


LEAN principles in personal performance

We are surrounded by principles, techniques, paradigms, all to better measure and increase performance, achieve our targets and, at the end of the day, earn more money.Within a company, such actions include measuring, evaluating and communicating the performance results. But what about our performance outside working hours? Why not apply the same principles and performance drivers to a personal level?

Well, the biggest challenge is finding metrics that really test your own assumptions. It is the challenge of identifying the sole ones that drive you towards performance. The performance of a business is the sum of the individual performances of all members.

The metrics within an organization are vastly and widely spread on different functional areas. The challenge of high stakeholders is to identify what matters in the vast selection of performance indicators they track.

By applying LEAN concepts, both managers and individuals can reorganise their procedures to be more efficient, by identifying and eliminating waste, so that all activities or processes are optimised and will consequently bring added value.

The same principle can be applied in daily life in order to help individuals work more with less time, by continuously and systematically eliminating waste, and through constant improvement, which usually means doing something that you have never done before.

So why not combine the lean principles with metrics, that companies also implement to better determine what really matters, simplify performance management, better visualize changes and cut the noise out of the results, reaching down to the information that really counts and is of interest?

Thus by eliminating waste, identifying the right KPIs specially tailored for you, constantly improving them and yourself, a system is created to measure and increase personal performance. Performance control systems can serve two purposes, to measure and to motivate.

personal performance

Choosing a metric for measuring personal performance should take into consideration the answer to some questions such as: What matters to me? What do I want to improve? At what do I have to excel in order to achieve my goal? How does this metric increase my value? Is this easy to measure and track? Do I understand this metric? Is this something I can influence and control? Is the metric stated in a positive term? Are data available at least every two weeks?

To better help an individual tailor their personal performance control system, another principle can be used, the “5S”. This implies one to follow a process of:

  • Sorting through a vast selection of metrics by getting rid of all unnecessary one;
  • Straightening by identifying an appropriate place for everything in order to reduce wasted time searching for things;
  • Sweeping by investing time, every single day, to organize and tidy up;
  • Standardizing by simplifying and being consistent of these work practices to all working areas;
  • Sustaining by maintaining what has been established.

One should keep in mind to always search for ways of improving the process and eliminating unnecessary waste.

In The KPI compendium, examples of metrics from the personal productivity areas, such as finances, home economics, personal development, process management, work-life balance are presented and, more than that, specific and applicable KPIs can be found to better optimize and eliminate the waste in a vast selection of metrics.

Developing a family budget offers more control over every household’s financial situations. Measuring expenses such as $ Expenditures on health insurance, $ Household consumption expenditure on clothing, $ Household consumption expenditure on food and others, may lead to an increase of funds for $ Expenditures on holiday trips, for example.

Developing a happiness metric can provide a good overview of how one spends his life. If cooking offers relaxation and increases morale, some metrics could be # Time spent cooking, % Use of the kitchen, # Oven cooking frequency, # Times friends/relatives visit for dinner.

If the job satisfaction is significantly low, one might think about the areas that bring happiness and the activities he desires to do. A roadmap can be pulled together for a career change in a way that can provide more satisfaction, as well as an adequate and motivational income.

In the case people do not spend enough time thinking about what truly makes them happy, a useful metric could be # Time spent thinking about the self. They could thus live from day-to-day and accept whatever comes their way. By using KPIs for measuring financial situation, happiness, personal development, we can often have a better life and gain more control.

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Personal KPIs: measure, acknowledge, improve!
Focus - the key success factor for boosting productivity

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