Last week during a long flight, I had an opportunity to finally read Michael Lewis's book, Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game. Commonly considered a sports or sports economics book, it is in fact an entertaining and complete case study in performance management.
Lewis carefully chronicles how the front office of the Oakland A's uses performance management for competitive advantage with clear and definable monetary results. The management team uses performance metrics to better manage the amateur draft, to better value trade prospects and to even rethink baseball tactics such as the sacrifice bunt. In a classic example of monetizing knowledge General Manager, Billy Beane, and his front office identify a serious, market inefficiency for professional baseball talent and leverage it. The result is a string of playoff appearances by an Oakland team with a payroll a fraction of that spent by their serious competitors.
This book should be a must read for anyone interested in BI, anyone interested in baseball, and absolutely everyone interested in getting mind space for a BI project among a management team more interested in sports metaphors than technology spending.