The metrics you should present to execs: 5 tips

The magic metric executives want to see? Doesn’t exist. They want information that moves the organization forward.

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Why do rational, intelligent PR people insist their clients or board want a single number that will magically sum up a quarter of work?

This train of thought was chugging through my brain when I checked my Map My Run numbers. I realized my definition of a good week doesn’t just include how fast I ran, but how many calories I burned and miles I got in. Which statistic is most important depends on whether I’m feeling fat, lazy or slow.

In fact, this obsession PR pros have with one number (worse when it’s advertising value equivalency) is even sillier because the CFO doesn’t present one number to describe the company’s health. In all the board meetings I’ve attended, board members discussed profits and losses, income, revenue, and sales forecasts. In smarter meetings, I’ve even seen a risk-and-reputation number derived from stakeholder surveys.

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