Wednesday, 20 July 2011

Getting Performance Management to work

We ran a one day session on Performance Management at our very special charity Canine Partners last week, and it went very well. They are a super team to work with, with a real passion for what they are doing, and they want their review system to enhance their performance and not be a de railer.

The thing is that if you get things right with PM you end up with:-

  • Motivated and skilled people 
  • Giving of their best 
  • Delivering challenging objectives 
  • That drive the organisation forward 
  • Who feel secure and confident of their future and that of the organisation 
  • They stay with the organisation 
  • Greater depth of know-how develops 
  • Sustained growth of the organisation
So how do you get there is always the big question because so many fail badly. Who do you know that looks forward to their annual appraisal?

We concluded that what you need to make things work are the following:-
  • Management to act as the role models – make sure the process starts with them
  • Make sure a key function of the process is focussed on the development and retention of your talent 
  • Allocate quality time to your people 
  • Take time to fully align objectives to the strategy of the organisation 
  • Allocate objectives that will grow people in their jobs 
  • Don’t overload people so pick the few objectives that will make a difference (Remember less = more)
  • Keep everything very simple - use just one pagers
  • Prioritise objectives right from the start e.g. 'The Critical few', 'Important to do' and 'Nice if I can'. OR 'Must Win Battles' 'Must Compete' 'Harvest' 'Exit'
  • Train managers to be able to use a coaching approach to managing performance
  • Train employees on how to get the best from the PM process
  • Provide continuous support and at least once a quarter conduct an interim review
  • Call the process anything but Performance Review / Appraisal, names that send shudders through people
  • If you can then get rid of the rating system as so often this final exercise spoils an otherwise great coaching conversation 
I ended the day feeling good about what Canine Partners will be doing as the biggest driver of improved performance is not the 'form' it is the mindset ... and they have got it right!!

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