Welcome to Part 4 of our 4-Part Series: Escaping the Performance Management Trap
In our previous articles in this series, we identified that Performance Management is a critical business process that is jointly used by employees and their immediate supervisors to plan, manage and assess the performance and development required of employees to deliver on the organization’s business goals.
To quickly summarize, in Part 1 we introduced the Conditions of Great Performance which are the elements that influence optimal performance, in that employees:
- Know what to do,
- are Able to do it,
- are Equipped to do it,
- Want to do it,
- and have the Interactions that produce productive relationships and a respectful workplace.
Part 2A and 2B painted a real situation at ConvenientStop Distributors when these Conditions of Great Performance were not met, causing confusion and misunderstanding due to a lack of communication and alignment to critical objectives. We outlined the actions plans that the organization needed to take to improve employee performance and their business results.
In this final installment we will tie all of this information together to support the Performance Management process, which allows leaders and employees to discuss performance with a well-grounded and intentional communication flow.
The following chart introduces the elements and practices that leaders and employees can adopt in their efforts to maximize their performance and business results.
We know that leaders have unique challenges and individuals in their team(s) in a wide spectrum of categories: a) they know who their tried and true stars are, b) they know who has the potential and has not unleashed that potential yet, and c) they know who has a lot of work to do to achieve better (not necessarily great) performance.
To get there requires shared ownership and a commitment to honest and authentic dialogue balanced by understanding and alignment of the critical business drivers and the skills experience and needs of the employee.
Each employee requires a unique approach and discussion, some easier than others, all important and necessary. Successful leaders establish the environment for effective communication to exist and they commit to their business objectives and the success of each employee. In return, employees understand that they actively share in the responsibility and outcomes of their individual efforts by proactively asking for feedback about their performance and the support they need to succeed.
A point we wish to address as we hear from leaders that during turbulent economic times the performance levels of their employees’ plummet. We want to advise that, yes, improved performance and overall engagement can be achieved in any economic environment, in fact, in a down market many times employees get new opportunities to learn and grow and enhance their skills due to higher customer demands and leaner budgets and resources. The fundamentals of the conversation do not change, the elements and practices as outlined above still apply.
Now is a great opportunity to evaluate how your work group or organization measures up. Know your strengths and identify your gaps as opportunities to incorporate some new practices over time. A little will mean a lot in your efforts to improve performance in your teams.
OUR OFFERS! In Part 1 we offered to share two documents: The Performance Maximizer® Checklist and the Performance Culture Quick-Audit Form. We are happy to share these documents again.
As a contribution to Part 3 we would like to share the Performance Development Process Summary that provides a more comprehensive look at the Process Elements and Practices that are Key Success Factors that we outlined in the above chart. Please send us an email if you wish to receive our complimentary documents.