PERFORAMNCE MANAGEMENT DONE RIGHT
Performance management is no simple subject. Trend after trend emerges, trying to solve the age-old question of how we effectively and efficiently manage our team, complete our projects, and satisfy our
stakeholders. When a performance management system isn’t set up and managed correctly, it will backfire. Instead of moving the company forward, we run the very real risk of unmotivated, uninterested, burnt-out employees.
Although many have tried, no one has been able to come up with
an all-encompassing solution to Performance Management. Why is this so difficult? We have to realize that Performance management isn’t and can’t just be a periodic performance review meeting, with each employee, to discuss their performance. It needs to address the company’s overall strategy from the ground up. At BridgePort Digital, we have developed
and tested a metric based strategy that is taking the world by a storm.
Let’s explain. The number of “Knowledge worker” employees keep growing. 60% of the US workforce are knowledge workers, up 20% since the 1970s. What makes someone a knowledge worker? An employee is classified as a knowledge worker if he knows more about his specialty than his superiors. These workers don’t produce a material object, they use their experience and expertise to produce decisions.
Until now, management has been making all the decisions and assigning the tasks to their employees. This is a problem because not only is the management not as knowledgeable and qualified to make these decisions, they also create an environment where the employee is unmotivated, not as invested, and doesn’t want to risk potential consequences for trying to point out issues when they see something
that won’t work or can be done in a better fashion.
Employers usually base performance reviews on the employees’ activities and behaviors instead of on what they really should be basing it on, their ideas and decisions. An employer has to create a safe, supportive, and trusting atmosphere for their employees. This environment will be conducive to encouraging ideas, creativity, and pride in their employees. They will then have employees that are more dedicated and driven, working together to accomplish the company goals effectively.
Decisions we make are based on the information we currently know. Hence, if we learn more or things change, our decisions should adjust. This is the true definition of strategy. It’s about making decisions,
tweaking them when necessary, and accomplishing the overall company goal and objective.
Companies need to create flexible, agile, and transparent approaches to setting their goals. Rigid performance reviews system just encourages old activities and doesn’t encourage innovation. Another thing that encourages innovation is recognizing assumptions that help or constrain the goal. Companies need to prioritize research into all of the assumptions and classifying them based on importance. They need to discard the assumption that are not important and just take precious resources, time, money, and man power. Assumptions should be objective, with no individual biases, and actions.
Agile methods are proven to having a three fold higher level of innovation than companies not using agile. This is because companies need and should encourage employees to constantly challenge assumptions like agile encourages. Performance management needs to stop focusing on managing employee behaviors but rather on managing their improvement of decisions.