Category Archives: targets

Reality has a liberal bias

This is a  quote from an American comedian, taking the mickey out of imaginary Republicans complaining that reality itself is as biased as the liberal-elite media against Republican beliefs and actions. It is a joke about how people convinced they … Continue reading

Posted in command and control, public sector, statistics, systems thinking, targets | Tagged , , , | 22 Comments

How to spoil someone for work (for ever more)

  There were 7 reasons why you shouldn’t touch systems thinking, and here’s an 8th… 8: You might get a sniff of systemsy heaven, but then end up working in command and control hell. Systems thinking makes no promises about being … Continue reading

Posted in systems thinking, systemz comix, targets | Tagged , , , | 7 Comments

The 1 thing nobody has ever said about a scorecard (and the 7 things they often do)

What people often say about scorecards 1. This colour symbol is wrong, shouldn’t it be a green? 2. Why isn’t that an up arrow? 3. There’s a spelling mistake in the comments 4. The formatting is slightly off. Needs more … Continue reading

Posted in all wrong, command and control, measures, purpose, questions, systems thinking, targets, thinking | Tagged , , | 6 Comments

How NOT to do demand

Just like Batman, demand management is an insane attempt to solve a problem. In this case demand  management is an attempt to solve the problem of less money in the public sector, but in a totally insane way. We here … Continue reading

Posted in all wrong, clarity of purpose, command and control, Demand, purpose, systems thinking, targets, vanguard method | Tagged , , , , | 4 Comments

Only bullies, cowards or fools set targets

This is the story of a teacher in a UK school who was set a target of 75% exam pass rate. This summer the pass rate was 65%. If we ignore all the things we know about measures and targets … Continue reading

Posted in systems thinking, targets | Tagged , , , | 12 Comments

A manager’s guide to good and bad measures

How can you tell if you’ve been sold a pup? If some performance spod is fobbing you off with nonsense instead of good sound performance information? Just check what’s put in front of you against this 5 point guide to … Continue reading

Posted in measures, systems thinking, targets, vanguard method | Tagged , , | 6 Comments

Hitler gets the SATS results

See, even Hitler was driven to tears by irrational target based standard setting.

Posted in all wrong, command and control, systems thinking, targets | Tagged , ,

How to run a call centre

The following story was provided by a fellow onion working somewhere in the world. I’ve changed the details to provide anonymity. …there was a company that wanted to find out how to sell more to its customers. It bought a voice recognition … Continue reading

Posted in RuinedByBestEfforts, systemz comix, targets, tools | Tagged , , ,

Why targets are good

Targets are good. They work. Comparing this quarters performance with last quarters, is good. It works Benchmarking performance against a group of other organisations, is good. That works too. Calm down! Let’s go back a bit…. Q: What’s the first … Continue reading

Posted in data, systems thinking, targets, thinking, vanguard method | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

12 Years as a slave

This is from the book “12 Years as a slave” by Solomon Northup, describing how cotton picking was managed on the plantation. “An ordinary day’s work is two hundred pounds. A slave who is accustomed to picking, is punished, if … Continue reading

Posted in all wrong, command and control, targets | Tagged | 3 Comments

How do YOU waste time at work?

1: Performance manage at the strategic level What is said: “We performance manage at a higher level, conversations happen between senior leaders where we challenge delivery of outcomes, and identify where performance is slipping” What actually happens: Managers gossip about … Continue reading

Posted in all wrong, learning, public sector, setting a numerical target is like..., statistics, systemz comix, targets | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

What happens when targets die?

Tell someone that targets don’t work, and it’s like telling them someone had just died. In a way it has, a small bit of their mind has ceased to be, the bit that made sense of work and how it … Continue reading

Posted in command and control, learning, systems thinking, systemz comix, targets | 9 Comments

Kittens are nice

Here is a kitten in a cup. It is nice. Shall I tell you what isn’t nice though? Using performance indicators to “measure outcomes” in return for money. It is also called payment by results, it is used in a … Continue reading

Posted in command and control, public sector, targets | Tagged , | 3 Comments

4 pie charts you won’t see in a performance report

I do performance reports for a living. Here are the most important 4 pie charts that I will never be able to put into a performance report.

Posted in all wrong, deming, systems thinking, targets | Tagged , | 23 Comments

Zombie Deming advises on the use of targets

Targets! Robust! Stretch! Aspirational! Bollocks. When the Audit Commission was around targets were everywhere. Partly due to the existence of a national framework of indicators that Local Authorities and lots of other public sector bodies had to report against. With … Continue reading

Posted in deming, systems thinking, systemz comix, targets | Tagged | Leave a comment

Olympabollox

BREAKING NEWS! The Olympics has been rocked by a doping scandal! People have been turning themselves into big fat dopes by polluting their minds with toxins in an attempt to try and improve performance! No, not another athlete caught using … Continue reading

Posted in targets | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Targetitis

You have an invisible illness. It is 2010, you have been sitting in an Accident & Emergency waiting room for 3 hours and 50 minutes waiting to be seen. Of the people before you who has been seen, on average … Continue reading

Posted in command and control, setting a numerical target is like..., targets, Uncategorized | 3 Comments