Four Simple Considerations You Need for Performance Measurement Success

I recently had the opportunity to attend the PuMP Toronto Workshop. PuMP is a performance measurement process that was created by Stacy Barr and licenced to Adura Strategy in Canada. OMAFRA’s Rural Economic Development Branch provides performance measurement resources to our clients; I am a firm believer in the value that they bring to measuring an organization’s impact and am always eager to hear what new methods and techniques are available to do so.

This intimate workshop brought together public and private sector organizations from across Canada, (participants represented organizations from Calgary, AB to Saint John, NL and all points in between) to learn about effective techniques, using the PuMP performance measurement blueprint.

Here are my four takeaways after participating in the workshop:

1. Hold your horses!

A typical knee-jerk reaction of many reporting processes is to target what to measure immediately and work towards satisfying that measure. Better practice involves identifying your strategic goals, developing measures logically through the strategic goals, setting a target and identifying initiatives to help achieve the target. Performance measurement is a process, not an event.

2. Talk like a ten-year old.

Performance measures should not be overly complicated; in many instances “weasel words” can get you away from establishing and measuring your goals. It is really important to put your goals in as plain and simple language as possible to get at what you really want to measure to achieve results.

3. The power of performance lies in your stakeholders.

Buy-in, not sign-off; your stakeholders care about your organizations, and are a key part of the process. Ultimately, even the cynics can be converted if the ownership is invested in them. The feedback your stakeholders provide will help to improve the logic and design of your measures. Ultimately, this decision will inspire and engage your stakeholders to own the process.

4. Report what matters

The data in your report needs to be useful, not just interesting. Your reports should answer the following three simple questions: What are you reporting? Why are you reporting it? And as a result, what are you going to do about what the data is telling you?

I hope these simple takeaways help you in your performance measurement process and encourage you to think differently about the results you want to achieve. For more information, visit to learn more about PuMP performance measurement process.

Myles Buck, Economic Development Specialist, OMAFRA

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