11 KPIs Smart CEOs Track Above All Others

07/17/2017 12:20 pm ET

Tracking key performance indicators is the difference between thinking everything's fine and knowing where a problem lies and what's behind it. So what KPIs should CEOs be tracking above all else, and why?

A. Net Promoter Score

Net promoter score is core to the long-term health of your business. If your business is growing but you don't have a strong NPS, then you likely don't have a sustainable advantage. A great NPS -- 60 or higher -- means that customers love your service, will stick with it and will refer friends. - Bhavin ParikhMagoosh Inc

A. Churn

As a subscription-based service, churn is the most vital KPI for my business to be tracking. Understanding when users join and when they leave helps to drive important marketing decisions, such as what we can afford to spend on cost per acquisition. - Mark KrassnerExpectful

A. Reasons for Return

It's always about why people leave, but it should also be about why they return. There are key things that drew them back, so it's important to know what those are so you can keep doing it, or add more to that motivation to return. - Zach BinderIpseity, Inc

A. Client Satisfaction

At the end of the day, by far the most important metric a CEO should be obsessed with is client satisfaction. If clients are happy, that means you likely have product or market fit, and they are more than likely to keep paying you. Keeping client satisfaction constant (or improving it) will allow you to increase prices or build new products to grow profits. - Kristopher JonesLSEO.com

A. Areas of Interaction

It's important to know which parts of a website -- mobile or desktop -- are the most widely used and visited, including the length of time there. This helps better understand what people are looking for and how satisfied they are with what they find there. - Cynthia JohnsonIpseity Media

A. Employee Retention and Satisfaction

Your business goes nowhere without a great team. Make sure you have metrics that track the rate at which people leave. More importantly, identify leading metrics that indicate whether someone on your team might be in the wrong seat or on the wrong bus. The worst thing is to lose an employee because he or she hates their role when you would have gladly given them a different one. - John RoodNext Step Test Preparation

A. Trust

When your team trusts each other, they will put up with the occasional mistakes and bad decisions. When there's trust, your team will also work together to solve challenges even if you aren't there. Too many CEOs focus just on bottom line numbers when they have zero impact on it. The CEO's responsibility is actually to the employees in the company. The employees are accountable for the numbers. - Krish ChopraUnited Medical Rotations

A. Net Profit

You need net profit weekly, looking backward and projecting into the next week. Same thing for the previous month and projected into next month. You also need to break it down based on what makes sense in your business, such as by channel, customer segment or department. What gets measured gets managed, right? Net profit at a granular level gives you insight into where to focus your management efforts. - Kevin ConnerVast Bridges

A. Reputation

What people are saying on social media and among influencers is vital to track, and tells a CEO a lot about the company's performance. Reputation is everything, so it must be managed with the appropriate tools, especially when it comes to addressing anything negative out there. - Andrew O'ConnorAmerican Addiction Centers

A. Quarterly Bookkeeping

It is very important to review and track your quarterly bookkeeping. You can have an accountant do it or do it yourself, but this report allows us to see all revenues, expenses, dues and payables. These numbers give us insight into controlling cost and determine activities that can increase revenue. Several times, I have been able to identify overpayments and paying for unused services. - Piyush JainSIMpalm

A. Repeat Purchase Rate

I love looking at our bottom line numbers, and am a strong believer in Net Promoter Score. At the end of the day, though, I care about if people are actually coming back to buy more products. Whether for themselves or as a gift, nothing lets me know that we're doing a good job like seeing repeat customers. And the biggest red flag is someone who buys once and then passively disappears! - Aaron SchwartzModify Watches

These answers are provided by the Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC), an invite-only organization comprised of the world's most promising young entrepreneurs. In partnership with Citi, YEC recently launched BusinessCollective, a free virtual mentorship program that helps millions of entrepreneurs start and grow businesses.

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