Effective performance management ensures employees clearly know what they are expected to accomplish and how their work contributes to the achievement of company goals.

Performance management isn’t just about rating employee performance in an annual performance appraisal. An effective performance management process focuses on;

  • aligning your workforce with your business goals and objectives,
  • improving employee performance & productivity
  • developing and coaching employees, and;
  • delivering better business results — all year round.

SMART Goals Ensure personal goals in some way contribute to the achievement of the company’s high-level strategic goals. Give your managers and employees training on how to write effective goals (involving employees in this process results in more ownership of personal goals). Make it a priority in your company to regularly communicate the progress and status for goals.

Competencies Use company, departmental, and job-specific competencies to clarify expectations and help describe what it takes to be successful in a role.  These can include technical, functional, behavioural and leadership dimensions and they speak to ‘how’ a person is expected to perform successfully in a role.

Provide regular feedback Think of feedback and recognition as an investment in future performance.  Make it a part of managers goals that they provide both formal and informal feedback and recognition to their direct reports. Managers should clearly tell employees what they are doing well and what needs to change/improve, and the impact on team, organization, customer, etc.

Feedback should include a specific example of when the behaviour in question was demonstrated (no generalizations!).  All feedback should be given in a professional, caring and supportive manner.

Focus on Employee Development A performance management process should help your employees develop and improve, so they can be successful, continually improve their performance, and increase their knowledge, skills, experience and capabilities.  As such, an annual development plan should be part of the formal annual review process and individual development should be aligned with future requirement of the team and the company so you are prepared to meet future demands in terms of skills, knowledge and competencies.

Engage & Empower Employees This is so important. Involving employees in designing their own job descriptions, in goal setting and including employee self-assessments as part of your performance management process helps engage employees in both the process and their performance. It also helps empower them.

Make It Easy for Managers and Employees Getting managers and employees to fully participate in the performance management process is critical to effectiveness. So make it easy for them. Your performance management process, forms, training and tools all need to:

  • Help employees achieve their goals and develop the competencies they and the organization need for continued success.
  • Help managers guide their employees, develop them and foster high performance.

Good performance management is an ongoing practice, not a once a year task. It ensures employees get the continual direction, feedback and development they need to improve and succeed. It helps align your workforce and drive business results.

Thank you for reading and engaging with me here.  If this is a current issue for you or you would like some more information or support, please contact me at info@hrwithharte.ie

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