As companies constantly evolve to fit the needs of our society’s demands, so do our ideas that shape the workforce to make it more productive, efficient, and sustaining to enhance the employee experience.
Many processes that seemed to work for us in past years eventually get replaced with innovative ideas based on what we discover works for us or not. In the case of performance management, we’re finding that being more people-focused is creating better results than process-focused managing.
Process-focused performance management tends to revolve around goal setting, assessing, and review, whereas people-focused practices place an emphasis on employee strengths, in-the-moment feedback, recognition, and rewards. And when a people-focused system of managing employees is more aligned with an organization’s culture, it greatly increases the success of its performance management program.
New research has found that companies who employ a coaching culture and incorporate such people-focused practices are more than twice as likely to have effective performance management than the average company, according to new Brandon Hall Group research. In the latest BH survey, overall, 28% of respondents said their PM program was effective or very effective, but that number rises to 42% for organizations that say they have collaborative cultures, and 61% for organizations that say they have coaching cultures.
“Curious that we spend more time congratulating people who have succeeded than encouraging people who have not.” – Neil deGrasse Tyson
We’re learning that more traditional methods have major drawbacks, such as an annual review feels more like a disciplinary hearing and tends to be disconnected from business outcomes or overall organizational success. Companies that shifted away from traditional performance management practices to more people-oriented systems replaced annual discussions with informal, frequent feedback; eliminated use of a forced ranking system; and replaced annual goal setting with near-term goals.
The key to fixing performance management appears to be more emphasis on providing continual coaching and informal feedback rather than scrutinizing employees once a year with a formal record of point rankings and criticism. Many of our programs teach leaders and managers how to get into the coaching mindset and are introduced to a toolkit of appropriate techniques for providing consistent feedback and direction for employees.
Here are a few that are vital to implementing an enhanced coaching culture:
This program teaches leaders how to define performance problems and use creative, motivational ways to get employees back on track; build upon current successes and create commitment to raise the bar to even greater performance; curb problem behavior using an effective model of feedback; develop high standards and expectations in others; and challenge great performers to achieve even more through the use of coaching and feedback skills.
This program uses the Coaching Skills Inventory, which helps in assessing participants’ current coaching strengths and weakness.
Rather than looking backwards and retroactively addressing past behavior, forward-thinking managers and supervisors can instead set clear expectations, model desired behavior, coach and counsel as appropriate, offer effective feedback in between formal performance reviews, AND make sure not to overlook your star performers who deserve some attention, too.
Participants learn how to apply the most appropriate reward system to effectively motivate employees and conduct coaching sessions that inspire and build confidence.
Leaders learn to focus on where they have control and influence along with recognizing the individual styles and needs of each direct report.