Until now, we have been measuring the progress of change processes, coaching processes and training, mainly by means of questions. However, this is very subjective. Our assessment can be influenced by a friendly and spontaneous trainer, for example. It just says little about the change in practice.
In addition, we observe changes in the organization to have an indication of progress. This is only the result of a mix of factors. Think of the economy, the weather, the training, a conflict with a manager, and many other factors. It is very difficult to determine what the influence of the factors has been on the final result.
We need objective measuring instruments to better assess progress. The solution is biofeedback. The most relevant thing we can measure is cardiac rhythm variability. This is a scientifically based way of determining the energy level. With the help of a software program we can link this data to the calendars. This will allow us to see exactly what takes energy and what gives energy.
The results of the measurements are only intended for the participant. No data will be exchanged with the organization. We want participants to feel safe and feel that we are measuring to help them. With this approach, almost all participants agree to participate in the measurements.
An employee has trouble giving feedback. Colleagues indicate that he's easily stimulated. The data show that the stress level is relatively high. We see that the employee does not take enough rest before going to bed. This prevents him from getting into a deep sleep. And as a result, there's a lack of sleep. In the past, you would offer feedback training to an employee. On the basis of these data, we are now looking for a better rhythm before going to bed.
An employee indicates that he is experiencing too much pressure at work. Compared to other employees, there is no reason for this. The measurement shows that the employee experiences a lot of stress when the manager is present. On the basis of this data, we can carry out targeted coaching.
We see that several team members leave the meeting with very little energy. After permission of all participants, we share the results with the team. Based on facts, we can start a conversation. What should the manager change? What do participants need to change?
Employees must show an entrepreneurial spirit
The organization invests in training, so that employees show more entrepreneurship. By means of our measurements, we can see what the starting situation is, what progress is being made and what the end result is.
Measurements are only meaningful when we take them in a specific context. That's why we link the data to the calendar. This allows us to identify which events give energy and which ones suck energy away. This will enable us to recognize patterns. MAHOUT is the software program that converts the "raw" data into usable data. It is an easy to use program to connect to your OUTLOOK calendar. In addition, you have plenty of room to make personal notes. We use this information to further develop the participant.
WHAT EXACTLY ARE WE MEASURING?
Examining the heart provides us with an enormous amount of information about our bodies. Our heart rate is constantly changing to meet life's needs. Heart rate variation (HRV) means the variation in time between successive heartbeats. It is universally accepted as a measurement point of activity of the autonomic nervous system (ANS).
The heart rate variation increases during relaxing and restorative activities and decreases during stress. Therefore, HRV is usually higher when the heart beats slowly and decreases as the heart beats faster. In other words, heart rate and HRV generally have a reversed relationship.
HRV changes from day to day based on activity levels and amount of work-related stress. In addition to these external stress factors, internal stress factors cause variation in the daily HRV levels. Internal stress factors include poor nutrition, alcohol consumption, illness, etc.