Are you still using the traditional performance appraisal in your organization? Or perhaps you do not yet have a process in place for employee performance management in your company. We hope this article inspires you to take a different perspective when it comes to evaluating the performance of your team.
When it comes to goal setting, having your eye on the bigger picture is often the key. This can be from sales goals to budgeting and even your employees. Are your employees working with the bigger picture in mind or are they focused on their task at hand without real concern for how it’s affecting your company? By focusing your employees on the bigger picture, this provides an opportunity for teamwork, accountability and a feeling of being a part of something larger. Teamwork, accountability and the feeling of being a part are all significant factors that affect employee engagement as well! When it comes to employee performance, everything they do should be reflected in the mission, vision and values of your organization.
Engaged employees understand the role they play in the company’s success. Ensuring that each employee’s goals are tied to larger organizational ambitions makes them more effective in motivating high achievement. This is not just for management alone, no matter what level your employee is at, they should be able to explain exactly how their efforts feed into the company strategy.
Essential Tip 1: Develop Corporate Goals
First things first, does your company know where it’s going in the next year? Often prior to the beginning of the year, management will sit down and determine what the organization wants to achieve in the following year. This may involve taking a look back at the previous year’s successes and failures. These Corporate Goals should align with the Mission, Vision & Values of your Organization as a while. Corporate Goals will generally be limited to 3 to 5 goals that allow the teams to focus on what they need to achieve that year. Once determined, these should be communicated to the entire organization – a step often overlooked.
Essential Tip 2: Align Goals and Determine High-Level Metrics
Once the corporate goals are established, these need to flow down to the specific business units, divisions and departments. Each of these areas will need to identify their role in achieving the corporate goals. These goals need to have defined objectives, timelines and metrics for measuring success. Communication is important to ensure that each department is aware of what the other is doing. There may be some goals that need to be achieved across the department and these need to be ironed out to avoid duplication or redundancies.
Now that goals are established at the corporate, business unit and divisional level, managers within the departments can begin to cascade these goals to the groups, teams and individuals in their area. Managers need to take the time to communicate the following to each employee:
- The Corporate Goals of the Organization
- How each individual’s work will contribute to the successful achievement of these goals
- What behaviours reflect the corporate values
- The importance and impact their individual work has
It may also be valuable to align compensation schemes to reflect these goals. This is only whether it is appropriate. For example, commission based structures work well where sales goals need to be achieved to increase sales for an organization.
When communicating to employees, it’s important to take the time to gather feedback and address any concerns they may have. You should also invite employees to draft goals that directly contribute to the organization’s mission. Targets should be realistic but stretch goals should be added to increase momentum. The time taken to get this right is important, as poorly set goals can be destructive to employees’ morale and productivity.
Essential Tip 3: Plan to Succeed
Once a goal is set, ask your employees to explain how they plan to meet their goals. Breaking down goals into tasks and objectives will help them keep on track throughout the year. By providing a step by step plan, with measures along the way will help achieve the goals. These include:
- Quality of Work
- Quantity of Work
- Meeting Deadlines
- Financial such as sales targets or budgets
It’s important that these are reviewed frequently and goals evaluated continuously throughout the period to ensure they are being met or changed if need be. Continuous feedback is essential for a successful performance management program. They should not have to wait until an annual performance appraisal to find out if they are off track.
Essential Tip 4: Keep Track of Progress
Engaged employees are one of your most valuable assets. If they don’t feel like you’re invested in their personal success then they are not going to be invested in the success of the company. Throughout the year, have regular check-ins to find out how both the long-term and short-term goals are going. Include information on the Company Goals as a whole. This will help relate their individual successes to how they are impacting the vision of the organization.
If employees are underperforming, this is a great way to discover what the reason is and make positive changes to help get them on board. By investing in your employees, you can help prevent errors caused by misunderstanding and also get an understanding of any areas that are not optimized.
Essential Tip 5: Celebrate Successes
Take the time to celebrate your team’s milestones. It should not just be failures that result in attention from management. Take the time to boost morale, keep up the momentum and celebrate hard work. Acknowledging this throughout the year is beneficial to your organization.
If this seems like a large amount of work, you’d be right. However, the time you take in setting up your employees to succeed, you’ll see the payoff. If this seems overwhelming, contact us and we will provide a performance evaluation solution for your organization.