The following article is excerpted from a lecture by Prem Chopra at the University of Tennessee, Chattanooga in September 2006. The text of the entire lecture can be found in Masters of the Game: Reaching Beyond the Nexus to Success and Happiness.
Phase III of Purposeful Action – Assessment and Renewal
Phase III of Purposeful Action involves assessing, renewing and rewarding the team. In the metaphor of the archer, in this phase, the archer examines where the arrow has landed and distributes the rewards equitably while re-adjusting the aim for the next release of the arrow.
Step 10 is Measurement and Assessment. In order to perform this step effectively, the goals of the action must be clear and measurable. Goals that are not measurable are meaningless.
For example, the goal to go to California is meaningless unless you know on what day and at what time you are going to arrive. Some of you are aware of the chronic delays and cancellation of airline flights. The quality of their performance is measurable because the airlines have published specific schedules for departure and arrival that can be used to measure their actual performance. In order to improve the quality of a product or service, one must constantly raise the bar that represents the quality standards you aspire to. This is also part of Step 10.
The Eleventh Step of Renewal involves readjusting and redirecting the action to improve the outcome. The story earlier about the Fatigue and Fail-Safe Training Program at the Boeing Company is an example of renewal of action to improve the quality and safety of all Boeing airplanes.
Another example of the significance of renewal is provided by the “outcome-based reimbursement system” introduced in the healthcare rehabilitation industry some years ago. Since rewards for the care providers are based on specific health milestones reached by the patient, there is continuous monitoring, assessment and renewal. At our software company, IVS, we designed a comprehensive scheduling and tracking system for rehab facilities. The system matches individual patients with therapists for specific care modalities and facilitates measurement of outcomes so that care plans can be renewed and outcomes improved.