Below is an excerpt from my book, “Made to Make It: A Guide To Screen Printing Success.” Learn helpful tips and tricks on how to run a screen printing business.

You’ve probably figured out by now that I like football. I see a ton of points of commonality between between winning football teams and winning organizations. If we ran our businesses as well as even a high school football team, we would create a lot more success and wealth with a lot less struggle and failure along the way.

Similar to great businesses, great football teams are founded on common values, and rely on the coordination of a team of players working together to achieve a shared vision for the future. They strategize on a game plan, practice how to make it happen, and train for success. Unlike most businesses, however, football teams have a very easy way of knowing if they are winning. At any time during the game, they, and the observers can look at the scoreboard and see who’s ahead.

Key Performance Indicators

Jack Welch, former CEO of General Electric, wrote a book about what it takes to make it in the world of business, called “Winning.” In it, he talks about the importance of goal-setting to helping your team understand the game, the score, and what it takes to win. We’ve tried to implement some of his methodologies at Ryonet, with Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) designed to give our team a sense of how close (or far away) we are from the goal line. We review our progress against these markers weekly and monthly to look for trends and areas of opportunity for improvement. We continue to look for ways to simplify this process and make it easier for people to understand how their individual contributions impact performance.

You can choose to list out KPIs across different functions of your organization or, depending on your business model, just choose one measure of success. Southwest Airlines has achieved great success with this strategy, simply aiming to conquer one goal—“Wheels Up.” They strive to deliver the fastest airport turnaround time, reducing delays, canceled flights, missed layovers, thereby achieving customer satisfaction and loyalty. They’ve even been profiled in “Great by Choice” which I mentioned earlier, and “Hyper Sales Growth” by Jack Daly.

Of course, it takes a while to become a Southwest Airlines. So, while you’re figuring out what that great, lofty goal might be, here are a few SMART items you can track performance against.


• Order delivery goals met

• % of misprints caught by shop

• % of returns/misprints/imperfects caught by customer

• Production goals met


• Consumables used per shirt

• Labor $ per shirt

Customer Satisfaction 

• Customer reviews

• Customer referrals

As your business grows and evolves, so should your KPIs. Remember, it’s your job to “ BE THE BEST AT BEING BETTER,” so challenge yourself to reach new milestones, which previously seemed impossible. You’d be amazed at how far you can go if you stretch yourself.

Like what you read? Get more great business tips on running a screen printing business from my book, “Made to Make It: A Guide To Screen Printing Success.”


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