Competition LO18150

Ben Compton (
Thu, 21 May 1998 11:37:01 -0500

Replying to LO18139 --


Currently I work in an environment where the only option I have is to
compete with myself. There are no formal "performance measurements" to
guage my performance against some sort of criteria. Nor do we measure
performance of one consultant against another because of the wide variety
of work we do, and the contextual differences that come from working with
different accounts.

I have developed a number of personal performance measurements that help
me focus on the stuff that will lead to improved performance and more
revenue. This helps me make critical decisions in my daily work. For
instance I know the average time it takes to perform a specific task, so
if I'm asked by a client to do some work for them I can schedule my time
wisely. This keeps me out of "crunch" mode and "idle" mode.

I also measure what type of work different clients require. For instance a
bank requires different service from me then does a large, bio-technology
company. By tracking these differences I am able to engage the customer in
a more integrated and empathetic fashion, which improves the relationship,
and leads to more business.

I also do customer satisfaction surveys on my own, and spend a lot of time
talking to my clients during non-work hours (i.e. at the bar or over
dinner) so I can get a feel for how they feel about me and the work I'm
doing for them.

I don't know if the other consultants have any of their own measurements,
and I'm not particularly worried about it. I am worried about my own
performance, and how I can constantly improve it.

I'm constantly reviewing my technical skills to make sure I'm current with
new technology, and that I understand how that technology impacts my daily
work; I'm constantly evaluating my social skills to make sure I'm engaging
the customer in a productive and healthy way; I'm constantly examining my
"sales" skills to make sure I'm selling my services in the best possible
way so I'm not leaving any extra money on the table. And I have developed
a few basic measurements that I can use to determine if my performance is
improving or not.

Most of this measurement and review is done on my own time, in the
evening. It's not "billable" time for me, but it has sure helped me keep
billable hours coming in and has helped me develop some lasting, healthy
relationships with critical clients (even some that were adversarial at

Frankly this is why I'm a good employee - - because I'm not afraid of
competition with myself or with others. And I'm sufficiently confident in
my abilities that I'm not afraid to share my knowledge with others. This
allows me to compete and cooperate at the same time.

Benjamin Compton
DWS -- "The GroupWise Integration Specialists"
A Novell Platinum Partner

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