As an accountant and business adviser, I am often asked about the KPI’s a leader should put in place to monitor and drive success. Of course, no conversation around KPI’s is complete without a conversation about accountability.

Recently I was asked to speak for the Real Estate Results Network at their Kickstart 2020 event [a great event for real estate Principals by the way]. There was a great crowd in the room willing and wanting to discuss the topic of KPIs and Accountability.

I wrapped up my presentation with my top tips and tricks on the topic of accountability and KPIs for Real Estate Principals.

know your breakeven

Although not technically a KPI I love monitoring the breakeven point of a real estate business because Principals tend to get their head around it easily and use it then to understand the impact of decisions as they make it.

watch out for squirrels

Squirrels are those random ideas or bright shiny objects that distract you from you really should be focused on in the business. Often the Principal brings back to the office squirrels of all different shapes and sizes – sometimes they are good but it is not wise to have too many squirrels in the office at any point in time.

get some rhythm

Know what you need to monitor daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly and annually. Not everything should be monitored all the time and too many KPI’s can be confusing for the team.

the most important part of accountability is the discussion

Measure your KPI’s but simply use the KPI’s to discuss what worked, what didn’t work, and what we could do to deliver a better result.

sometimes a proxy will do

When precise data doesn’t exist, don’t stress and use a proxy… it is the trend that often matters most so start measuring and watch for trends.

KPI fatigue is real

In business these days we have so many things that are changing… new technology, new people, new ways of doing things [like offshoring]. Not everyone deals with change well and continuing to add new KPI’s is no different.

maybe you are encouraging the wrong behaviour

Often I hear businesses say they are proactive and innovative and yet they still hold people accountable to same old school metrics of their competitors. What you monitor will drive the actions of your team.

rubbish in, rubbish out

Attention does need to be given to how data is collated. If you cannot rely on it, don’t bother. Take the time to check the process for data collation upfront so you have confidence in what is produced.

it’s ok to have a few favourites

I have a few favourites I always lean on for the real estate industry. Find yours and hero them within your business.

we are humans

Don’t underestimate the importance of the human side of accountability. Check out Patrick Lencioni’s ‘5 Dysfunctions of a Team’.  You need to build trust before you can have healthy conflict.

You can download a copy of my preso here.