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MBOs – the Basic Technology & Process that Makes it Work

February 12, 2009

If you find yourself are interested in MBOs as 2009 gets into full swing,
I would like to share just a couple of quick tips to help you have an
easier time with the MBO style of management.


First of all, MBOs are pretty common place.  We work with companies
all over the world, and most of them have MBOs in one form or another.
That is they typically have a list of goals, objectives and KPIs in a
powerpoint, a word document, maybe an Excel spreadsheet.

Here’s the truth about that.  Most of those MBO lists we see are what
we consider dead.  In all likelihood your list of Business Objectives is dead
upon review after the first management or board meeting.  Only to be revived
prior to the next review meeting, whether that happens quarterly or annually.

What do I mean by saying they are dead? I mean that for most of us,
MBOs are just a list, a list that doesn’t really have any life to it in terms
of the managing process.

No one is looking at those objectives today and deciding how to prioritize
actions or resources to make sure progress is made towards those

You see, for most companies, MBOs are really a form of a report,
not something that daily drives decision making and prioritization,
not something  effective in managing organizations.– and consequently
the benefits of MBOs or managing by objectives is lost.

So I’m doing this blog and video because I would like to help you if you are
interested in getting the benefits of MBOs in place and alive and well at the
organization you work at.

What we find is that in order for MBOs to be alive you need two things:

1. First, the right kind of technology, and that’s not a powerpoint document
in case you were wondering.  The right kind of technology, like our product
ManagePro, that not only identifies your MBOs but also tracks and links all
the projects and tasks that are supporting those objectives.

What that does, over something like a powerpoint or a spreadsheet, is that
it gives you big time visibility, which means you get an immediate jump in
transparency, accountability and ultimately results, not to mention sharply
reducing the time spent searching for key information and the risk of having
details slip through the cracks.

2. Secondly you need to do something really uncomplicated, but you need
to do it regularly.  What’s that?  You need to regulary hold people accountable
to those MBOs, by completing reviews of their projects that are supporting
those MBOs.

It’s really a very disarmingly simple process of asking three questions,
“Where are we?” e.g. Give me a status update on progress todate and issues,
“What’s next?” e.g. What are the next steps planned, and
“What’s the score?” e.g. How do we know if we’re making progress.

Again we make all of that a snap in ManagePro, right down to setting daily
priorities.  Try out the 30 day demo of ManagePro, that’s available on our site
at www.managepro.com – and let me know what you think.  I would also
encourage you to check out the link to the article below on the history and
evolution of MBOs, if you would like to know more about how we employ
that 20th century concept in the 21st century.


The History and Evolution of MBO

MBO Software

MBO Techology and Processes

Hints for using MBO

1 Comment. Leave new

I have been using management by objectives for years. I agree that management by objectives requires the uses of the right tool to monitor tasks progress and completion … after objectives have been identified. I see that ManagePro provides the typical Gantt Chart feature, do you have a PERT Chart features or some other method to assist in identifying and discussion conflicts, identifying paths of risk and note pacing sequences of activities?


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