How many of us have heard…or uttered … these phrases in our professional lives?
“I haven’t had a performance review with my boss since I got here.”
“She couldn’t really tell me why I got the performance rating.”
“It’s not fair. I know I did better than he says I did.”
“He said, I should ‘be happy’”
Are these the comments that stellar organizations and relations are built upon? I think not. If this is, or has been, a part of your journey, how can we as leaders make change? Some believe that change can only occur from the top of an organization. There is a grass roots component that I believe can enhance your work place and potentially have an impact on the larger organization. It begins with first level leaders understanding key themes about managing employee performance to better the organization. I have always thought of these as the key components of understanding outstanding employee performance management:
Let’s address each of these in successive posts, starting with WHY.
WHY IS PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT IMPORTANT TO THE WORKPLACE?
1. Critical to Business Success. Employees must have expectations for performance excellence tied to goals. Without employee performance expectations aligned with company vision and mission, employees and leaders struggle with focus. When employee expectations are aligned and met, it is a simple progression that leads to enhanced engagement.
2. Improves Colleague Engagement. Simply doing without understanding why limits employee engagement. Imagine the motivation when an employee actually gets it. Think of how that employee feels about him/herself and the work required on a project, when they are clear on the importance of how their role relates to the end product.
3. Drives Individual Employee Development. As the leader assigns goals and/or objectives, it can be done with an eye toward stretching the ability of the employee. In so doing, a business-complementary stretch objective is introduced; the employee senses trust on the part of the leader and can more easily align with growth/development opportunities. Success for both parties is derived from employee growth and business success. Of course, employee accountability for performance is an important part of development and growth.
4. Enhances Rewards and Recognition Program. With a clear, established performance program, employees understand what is happening to them. Comments like those that opened this blog can be reduced and eliminated.
We may even get solid suggestions and recommendations from our employees concerning rewards and recognition. Talk about engagement!
5. Incentivizes Employees. Now we have employees who understand and participate in the organization’s rewards and recognition program. They are bought-in to their individual development objectives. They are engaged because there is clarity and understanding about what they are doing and why. Because they see the alignment with overall business vision and goals, these employees are now leaning forward, looking for additional opportunities.
Once we have clarity about WHY performance management is valuable, we need to next look at WHO is involved in our performance management process. That is the topic for our next blog.
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This article was written by Gary Steele, Vice President with Learning Dynamics. Visit his personal profile page to learn more about Gary’s career and expertise.
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Learning Dynamics offers several customizable leadership development programs including Coaching for Results. Contact us today to learn how we can help your organization develop your supervisors and managers into leaders.