We All Have Made Performance Management Mistakes
From being too tough to not tough enough, performance management mistakes happen. Because performance management is at the heart of a high performance culture, performance management mistakes can be costly.
What is a High Performance Culture?
We define organizational culture as how things truly get done in an organization. It can be measured by understanding the way people think, behave and work. A high performance culture is an environment that is getting the most from its people in both the short- and long term. We believe that people change when their environment changes.
We also believe it is a leader’s job to create the circumstances to consistently get the most out of their people in a way that is consistent with the organization’s core values, behaviors and strategies.
The Definition of Performance Management
We define performance management as the processes and practices by which you provide your employees with information regarding their performance status. Strong performance management practices help to set clear performance expectations, let people know where they stand in terms of performance, provide positive feedback for desired behaviors and provide negative feedback for undesired behaviors.
Four of the Most Common Performance Management Mistakes to Avoid
As a leader, your ability to effectively manage individual and team performance is critical to driving organizational success. To succeed, avoid these four common performance management mistakes:
1. Treating Performance as a One-time Event
The number one performance management mistake is treating the performance management process as a one-time instead of ongoing process to let employees know where they stand and develop their careers. The performance review should be only a small component of an overall performance management program. Performance management should be a continuous process, not an event.
2. Being Afraid of Behavior Change
It is very difficult to change organizational performance without changing individual performance and individual behavior. People change as their environmental circumstances change. Only when managers understand and apply the core principles of high performance environments and behavioral science will they unlock the full potential of their direct reports.
Do not be afraid to set clear behavior expectations that align with your goals and workplace culture.
3. Having Unclear Performance Standards
It is difficult, frustrating, and counterproductive to appraise performance against ambiguous, unfair, inconsistent, misunderstood, changing, impossible, or immeasurable performance standards. Strategic clarity accounts for 31% of the difference between high and low performing teams. Ensure your team understands and believes in where they are headed,
4. Placing Blame Instead of Improving Performance
Performance management is about clarity, accountability, rewards, recognition, and improvement – not about fault-finding. People make mistakes. Your job as a leader is to help your direct reports learn from mistakes while having an accurate picture of their performance against a clear standard as you support them to continuously learn, improve and excel.
The Bottom Line
Clear, fair and relevant performance expectations let individuals, teams and functions know where they stand, set the stage for performance coaching and inform professional development. Three key ingredients of an effective performance mangement process.
To learn more about performance management mistakes and high performance culture best practices, download, The Top 5 Warning Signs Your Performance Environment is in Trouble
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We partnered with LSA to pilot a customized behavioral interviewing program to help ensure that we continue to hire the best and brightest as we continue to rapidly scale. LSA’s ability to understand our business and our unique culture combined with their desire to ensure that the best practices framework truly fits our performance environment and is highly adopted by our people is a real blessing. Most other firms want to just ‘give you training.’ Not LSA, they are focused on helping me hit our hiring forecasts and attract A players.
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We signed up with LSA early on–as their 22nd Member! Since then, our organization’s learning needs have increased and decreased and increased again with the changing times. The beauty of the LSA business model is its flexibility…when we needed to supplement our own internal resources, we used LSA services knowing that we could depend on the outstanding quality of the leadership development and management training programs they provide.
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Barry L. Byrd, SPHR
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