We collate a lot of data and we try to use that data to analyse and increase the productivity of our workforces. We also know that every employee is the exception to a rule, in one way or another. No human, by our nature, acts in the same way as every other, all the time. And all of those quirks and nuances are the foundations on which innovation and creative thought are built.

We are using technology to analyse many markers of our lives, from watches to track our movements, to apps to measure how long we are watching cat videos. At the same time, the acronym KPI has crept into the lives of so many beyond the walls of corporate headquarters’ that saying the words “key performance indicator” out loud just feels weird.

Measuring behaviours is being handed over to the machines at increasing rates in the corporate world, using Fitbit technology for health and wellbeing incentives, email sentiment analysis to measure employee happiness and a myriad of tools to measure performance.

So, will these combine, get used holistically and give us personalised KPIs? Using AI and machine learning to sift the analytics to point at a set of individual KPIs for each employee that optimizes their productivity? Amend them regularly depending on changes in circumstance? Have different KPIs at different times of the year, month, week?

As the old saying goes, a happy workforce is a productive workforce. A happy workforce, at least in part, requires the right intensity of challenges, no too much to burn out, not too little to generate boredom. It could be soon that we all work at different prescribed speeds, and in doing so create a happier and more productive organisation.