Sharing some of the more popular pieces from the eight years of Compensation Force archives. Having always been a fan of brevity and focus, I found this notion intriguing and particularly to our work in "philosophizing" our compensation programs!
A recent Harvard Business Review blog post The Eight-Word Mission Statement got me thinking. It tells the story of Kevin Starr who, as Executive Director of the Mulago Foundation, is responsible for channelling investment dollars to socially minded businesses. It speaks specifically of his compelling approach to winnowing out less quality "pitches" and investment opportunities (don't tell me there's no parallel to managing compensation investments here).
Starr insists that the companies he funds express their missions in under eight words - and that they follow the format "verb, target, outcome." No jargon, no corporate gobbledy-gook. Just focus and clarity.
Examples include " Save endangered species from extinction" and "Improve African children's health."
In addition to the laser-honed mission statement, Starr also insists that any companies receiving investment dollars "measure the right thing" and "measure it well."
What if reward plans had similarly focused mission statements? What if we insisted, of ourselves and of others designing reward programs, on the focus and clarity of an eight-word-or-less-verb-target-outcome explanation of how those compensation dollars were going to be used? Along with the basics of a plan for measuring the success of doing just that?
Just thinking out loud.
Image: Courtesy of nortoncreative.com