A shot at life without metrics

Can you let go of stats for a while?

Are you a metrics junkie?

I am.

I also love to introspect. It is my way of making sure that things are on right track.

Checking stats for my personal blog is one of my favorite pass times. I recently noticed that I was checking my blog stats more often than I should.

When traffic (people visiting web properties) is on an upswing it is exciting to check you stats and see how more and more visitors from across the world come to read what you have written.

Guess this is linked to happiness and result driven mentality.  When you see people are visiting and leaving comments, you feel that people like what you are writing. It is ego boosting and drives you to do more work.

Let us look at other side of it.

Traffic is reward for what you worked on earlier. But unless you do work that is important – there will be no traffic.

Checking stats is like making a note of what happened in the past – in life. What has happened – has happened and you checking it will not make any difference. It may give you some joy if things have been good – learnings to take home, if things were not good. But nothing beyond it.

In any case  not good to rest on your laurels.

It make sense to create fresh.

So, time for me to go off-stats and on to doing work that matters.

I will not check any stats for one month.

For networks like Twitter, it is impossible not to notice numbers – but I will make a conscious attempt not to pay all of my attention to number of followers.

In cases where the numbers are hidden inside analytics software dashboard – I will not open that dashboard for a month.

Why I am doing this?

Because I think it is good to question your way of doing things once in a while, even if they are working ok.

For past couple of months – I have been in high metrics mode.

Checking metrics for the blog – other websites/businesses I run. Thankfully they have been on an upswing. Seeing how many tickets did we sell for a conference like TEDxGurgaon is important. It is a not for profit event, still I needed to make sure that we sell enough tickets – not to lose money.

But even when it is important – too much checking takes you away from real stuff.

Our success comes from making art, doing work that needs to be done first more than anything. Stats may be relevant to some – to some extent but not for all of us.

So, time to make art for me and do things that matter.

To reiterate, I will not check any digital metrics for a month – unless I am responsible for someone else’s money.

Wish me luck 🙂

And what about you?

Photo credits

Comments

  1. sheila mccann

    Hey Mohit,

    Numbers, numbers, numbers = today’s world! I’m glad your highlighting the importance of stepping outside the numbers box. Even my kids are getting so tuned into the whole numbers thing (ie facebook etc.) within their peer groups.
    I’m curious to see your follow up post. Chances are if you do good work the numbers will follow and even if they don’t, well, you’ve done good work! At least that is how I view it 🙂

  2. Mohit Pawar

    Yes Sheila.

    Follow up post sure. Will share as I finish the experiment and write it.

    And you are right about kids – I have experienced same with my younger sister. One way is to take them out often, give them an opportunity to experience true joy of making things with their own hands, and share abundant love with them. This way they will be less keen to engage in fluff activities like Facebook.

    Well said about value of good work 🙂 In my mind also – good work holds a lot of value.

    Thanks!

  3. Jigyasa

    Mohit

    Certainly it sounds like a great way of getting on to do great things. Yes, all of us are now giving immense details to numbers…may be because that is a way how people and even businesses measure success!

    The parameters need to change especially for the budding generations….because for them popularity, happiness and success everything depends on metrics!

    All the best for this experiment as we wait to read the results.

  4. Ranjan Jha

    Hi Mohit,

    “The marketers who came before you have broken my trust” — it is the metrics of customers.

    “How to know the questions behind customers’ disagreement” — it is the metrics of marketers.

    If not always but to some extent, entrepreneurs are bound to keep up with metrics.
    Not necessarily to measure day-to-day success or day-to-day failure, but to put forward the appropriate metrics.

    Although, once again a great analysis……

    1. Mohit Pawar

      Hi Ranjan,
      Thanks.
      Valid point.
      Metrics are important – less or more – depending on what one does for a living.
      But in most scenarios it is OK to check once a day and spend rest of the time in doing more important things that drive those metrics. Metrics are nothing on their own – they are just results of what a marketer or a business owner does.
      For example if a person owns a garment manufacturing business – and her stuff is not selling (no. of garments sold being a metrics) – she should focus on fine tuning the product or improving sales & marketing or both. Checking 5 times a day – how much she sold – will not improve the situation.
      This is so simple to understand. But we go down and get entangled in the metrics trap.
      And it is good to try and get out.
      – mohit

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