Measure What You Treasure
A gift I bought for myself just after Christmas is a fitness tracker called the Fitbit. This is not an ad for Fitbit although I do love The Force product that I purchased. Rather the fitness monitor reminded me of an important concept I already valued but this really sparked how much the concept is so true. If you measure what you treasure you are sure to get something valuable from the results.
The Force is a wristband that I wear everyday, all day. It tracks things such as number of steps, miles traveled, active minutes, calories burned, flights of stairs climbed, and even how much I sleep. As I travel around the country to work with teams and speak at clinics I have to do the TSA shuffle at airports, strip down, strike a pose, and them reassemble everything. I find that even though I could leave the Fitbit off I put it back on immediately because I don’t want to miss out on any steps that if I don’t have it on. It goes right to the core of if you treasure it, measure it. I have always considered myself a fit person but this takes it to another level for me.
Some of the major reasons you should be measuring what you treasure are:
1) It brings my level of activity for the day right to the forefront of my thoughts and makes me aware of what I am doing or not doing on any given day.
2) It advertises the type of person you want to be. It is right on my wrist and is a great reminder for me to stay active.
3) It holds me accountable. If I am not staying active I will know.
4) It allows me to set goals. Once those are reached it allows me to set new ones.
5) It allows me to compete against my best self and also others too.
6) It allows me to make informed decisions on my health.
7) It allows doesn’t lie to me. Numbers don’t do that.
If you aren’t assessing your just guessing.
On the baseball side of things I use process-based statistics with teams to measure the process for all of the reasons listed above. This month I wrote blogs about many of 1-Pitch Warrior Process Based Measurements (QABs, B.A.S.E.2., Team Process Index, Quality Inning, Strike %, 1st Pitch Strike %, After Three Pitches and S.T.R.1.K.E. are all contained within the 1PW System), that allow players and coaches the ability to:
1) Become aware of what they value in their program.
- If you are going to measure it then you need to teach your players what it is all about, instruct them so they too gain awareness off the results
- Post them! Can’t overstate this one. Coaches that measure things and don’t share the results are missing the bigger picture. It will help players buy in if you show them the results on a consistent basis. I am not talking about posting any but the process based measurements though.
3) Be held accountable
- At practice we measured, during games we measured. Not because we were stat junkies but because we wanted to see the results.
4) Goals for self and team
- Measuring allows you to set standards of excellence and strive for new personal best both as individuals and for your team. They allow improvement to be seen and celebrated.
5) Compete against each other and previous teams (both in games and at practice)
- Players know what matters and will be competing against each other for potential playing time in a system that is fair and objective
6) Help coaches make decisions about playing time and game strategy
- If there is a question of who should be playing between two players let the numbers help make those decisions. Players will respect it and value the information you give them why they aren’t going to be a starter. They also let you know where you are weak and what parts of the game could improve.
7) More objective approach
- Numbers don’t lie but players will if you don’t give them concrete reasons they can understand about why they aren’t in the starting line-up or why their performance is not up to par. They will try to rationalize (tell them self rational-lies) Coach doesn’t like me, I am not a good player, etc.