Chris Johnessee’s Tips for Setting and Achieving Goals
By Ella Wilson
GetUWired wonderboy Chris Johnessee is at it again – he took home the title of January Employee of the Month (he won in September, too). How does he do it? It’s all about goals.
Having measurable goals is a big part of the GetUWired philosophy, and we’ve seen the number of metrics and KPIs we use at GetUWired grow exponentially over the past year to help us deal with our explosive growth.
Chris has taken that mantra and personalized it to fit his team. Every month, his team sets personal and work-related goals, and then they meet daily to discuss how things are going. GetUWired’s overall metrics and goal structure has become part of his team’s goal structure.
“We talk about them and implement them into our daily routines,” Chris said. “For our team, it’s more about trying to develop our relationship and creating a culture where our team understands the goals and the rules that are associated with them. Then, they just kind of sit in the background, always understood, while we strive to reach and surpass them on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis. All while working together as best we can.”
Why Personal Goals are Important at Work
Chris understands that being productive at work has a lot to do with having a good life outside of work. So he and his team create personal goals every month that they talk about and monitor at their daily meetings. Creating these personal goals helps Chris and his team feel like their lives matter – that they’re not just replaceable worker bees – and keeps them close by having them all interested and active in each other’s’ lives.
When they meet a goal (like developer Jon McBrayer hitting the gym every day), they celebrate together. When they fail to achieve a goal (like Zac asking a girl out – and getting turned down. Sorry Zac), they mourn together. And they keep each other accountable, which inspires them all to achieve what they’ve set out to do.
“It’s important that we don’t focus on business 100% of the time,” Chris said. “Personal lives affect work. To achieve goals, it’s important to have a personal connection to everyone on your team.”
Team Goals Aligned with Our Vision
GetUWired recently implemented tracking measures that keep up with three Overall Employee Efficiency Metrics: how many total hours worked, how many internal (non-billable) hours logged, and a complex quality assurance metric.
Project Managers are responsible for their teams maintaining good scores in these areas. The purpose of measuring employee efficiency is to improve our processes so we can do great work and get it to our clients in an appropriate turnaround time.
“Our purpose is to help small businesses succeed,” Chris said. “The more efficient we are, the faster we can do that. It’s about delivering ROI to our clients as quickly as we can, along with a great sense of pride and ownership in the work we complete for them.”
So Chris worked these metrics into his team’s work goals. His four-person team keeps a close eye on how much internal time they’re logging and makes sure it’s well under the 20% standard that GetUWired considers acceptable. Internal time is time that is not billable – for things like learning new skills, sharing ideas, and team meetings.
For quality assurance, the team has developed a QA scorecard system for making sure everything that goes to our clients is top notch. If they find areas they can improve upon, points are reduced on the scorecard. If they have an idea on how to make something better, they add a point. Chris says there’s no real “prize” for the month’s winner, but when his team meets all of their work goals for the month, he treats them to lunch. Its about the team bonding, not the free meal… although his developers may disagree!
Giving his team a voice in their work
One way Chris gets such great performance out of his team is by letting them choose which projects they want to work on. Everyone has their special talents and interests, and rather than forcing someone to work on a task that he knows they’ll hate, he lets them choose what they want to work on. Sometimes, of course, everyone has to work on things they’re not crazy about. But allowing his team to delegate tasks among themselves allows for a greater feeling of control in their workday – and they get to focus on doing what they do best.
“I try not to force projects on them,” Chris said. “I let them have a say in what they’re working on – that in itself lends to them just being efficient in their work and enjoying what they’re doing.”
Inspiring team unity
A lot of what Chris does with his team, from setting goals to buying them lunch, has to do with inspiring team loyalty. When he and his developers are working to help each other, and not just working to take home a paycheck, everybody wins. The work is better, his team is happier, and his metrics are better. (And he gets to star in these blogs.)
And apparently his plan is working. Since the new metrics system was put in place back in September, Chris’ team has met their goals every single time.
Want to work with a team that can’t lose?
Chris and his team want to work with you! All you have to do is call us today at 877-236-9094 or visit us online at www.GetUWired.com.