I was getting my flu shot, the other day, and my pharmacist started complaining about her job. Her parent company is breathing down her neck.
“These guys at corporate? They measure everything.”
When the phone rings, and it’s a doctor, they want her to answer it in under three rings. Her average is 3.6 rings, but they’re not giving her additional headcount. Also, they want her to do more shots. Not shots featuring Lil John. Pneumonia and Shingles shots, which aren’t as fun.
I tried to tell my pharmacist that every job has metrics. The cook at your favorite restaurant is measured on how many eggs he breaks. The guy pumping gas on the Jersey Turnpike is measured on how much fuel he spills and how quickly he turns over his customers. Even my job, which is sweet, has me using words like “intuitive” and “growth hacking.”
If I had a dashboard that tracked how much I hate myself, it would melt.
My pharmacist shrugged her shoulders and said, yeah, ok, all jobs suck. You’re measured on stuff that matters to someone else but probably not you. Then she jabbed me with a needle but didn’t have a flu shot sticker for me.
(I was robbed. I love stickers.)
So let this exchange be a warning to everyone from bakers to auditors to firefighters: you will be measured, and every job across the world is driven by metrics. Be good at what you do. Be confident. Be honest. That’s the key to fighting city hall and beating back the relentless drum of bogus benchmarks.