Only four people quickly come to mind when I think about performance improvement and measurement the right way: Donald Wheeler, Stacey Barr, Dean Spitzer, and Mark Graban. I view Mark’s book as the very best companion to Wheeler’s, Understanding Variation. His three core questions strike at the heart of any conversation around a transformational change in the organization.
Who Is Mark Graban?
Mark definitely has the ‘it factor’ as a brilliant thinker, global consultant, speaker, podcaster, author, and much more. Here are a few relevant links:
- Mark Graban (consultant website)
- Amazon Author Page
- LinkedIn Profile (more than 500k followers)
- Twitter Account
- My Favorite Mistake Podcast (check the navigation menu for his other podcasts)
- Mark’s Contact Page
Mark’s Most Recent Books
Titles are listed by most recent revision update in the Kindle version:
- Lean Hospitals (2018)
- Measures of Success (2018)
- Healthcare Kaizen (2018)
- Practicing Lean (2016)
- Reflections from Lean Leaders (2014)
The Core Four of Performance Measurement and Improvement
CFO Bookshelf admires and respects these transformational leaders because their focus is on people first, and we realize W. Edwards Deming would be nodding with approval.
Books listed under each transformational leader are our picks for getting started with their work.
Book: Measures of Success
Book: Understanding Variation
Book: Practical Performance Measurement
Book: Transforming Performance Measurement
- The list of great authors in the praise section of the book is phenomenal (including Dan Pink)
- Why most leaders think most numbers are signals
- The 2-point data comparison
- Revisiting Don Wheeler’s great book
- Mark Graban’s background (fascinating origin story)
- Clap or slap management and the idea behind the book cover of, Measures of Success
- “Effective managers don’t just set targets, they work together with other people to hit those targets.”
- The three core questions (brilliant)
- Reacting vs being calm and systematic about improving
- What is a process behavior chart?
- Three things that can happen when team members are pressured to hit a target (Mark references Brian Joiner)
- Meeting cadence
- A minor rant with bowling charts
CFO Bookshelf Loved Measures of Success
The book is so good that I’ve already read it three times. I’ll probably read it again in 2022 now that I have a signed copy of the book. Below are just a smattering of the lines I highlighted in my Kindle version.
Three Critical Questions Any Business Leader Can Ask About Performance Improvement
As much as I love Wheeler’s book on variation and process behavior charts, Mark’s book goes a step further by writing as though he’s communicating to a CEO who desperately needs help in improving his organization.
Early in the book, Mark drops his three core questions which we addressed in the podcast. Here are my highlights from the book. These three questions alone are worth the price of the book.
Books Mentioned by Mark Graban
We ask every guest about their favorite books. Here are the topics, titles, and authors mentioned:
- W. Edwards Deming
- Out of Crisis
- The New Economics
- Dr. Deming: The American who Taught the Japanese About Quality
- Pascal Dennis
- Creating a Lean Culture
- Motivational Leadership for Interviewing
If You Liked The Show With Mark Graban
If you liked this show, here are the producer’s picks that are similar to Mark’s message. Two of the guests are in our CFO Bookshelf Core Four of performance measurement and improvement leaders.
Practical Performance Measurement with Stacey Barr
Transformational Performance Measurement
The Grandfather of Gamification and The Game of Work