Starting the next year off on the right foot

It’s getting very close to the end of the year, we have been putting a lot of emphasis on year-end performance reviews for both managers and employees and the implementation of personal development plans, a paramount process within any serious organization. In summary, managers have to sit down with their employees and rate them on how they are doing, what they are doing well, and what needs to be changed, simultaneously this is an opportunity to set expectations and goals for months to come.

It’s a tough position for both sides, but there is a reason why management performance reviews are put into place. If this process is used well, organizations will be able to lead and motivate employees to deliver the performance the company needs and expect from the workforce.

When used in the right way, these reviews can be a valuable management tool that helps employees grow. Avoid this process and you will simply have questions such as Why employees are not performing? Remember that with few exceptions there are not bad employees, only bad managers and measuring and addressing performance along with setting, establishing realistic goals and creating Personal Development Plans are part of the Management job description.

Crystal clear communication

Performance reviews are put in place to collect information from both employees and managers. Communication is a two-way street, and who ever is conducting the process would have to make sure that employees are fully engaged in the conversation. For those managers who exert authority in military way, please bear in mind there is no reason why employees should be forced to sit down passively and take criticism without getting the opportunity to speak up, sharing their opinions or simple justify their actions. Giving employees the opportunity to speak will show managers their employees’ priorities and focus points. Allow your people to speak and accept communication as two way avenue.

Building an honest working relationship

During my time development and conducting this process, I often see two bands on each side,the rivalry between employees and line managers, It’s important to remember that monitoring employee performance is just part of the overall relationship between managers and employees and that building this relationship does not happen only at the end of the year, If the right communication was there all the year around, then process will run in harmony, otherwise there is a tense and unpleasant process. Make sure you build an honest relationship and that proper tools are given to succeed, rest assure that employees will feel more engaged, motivated and ready to take steps to raise their performance levels and to help the company grow.

Conclusion

After the performance review is over, that doesn’t mean business should go back to what it was before. Reviews are valuable in part because they help to identify gaps in performance where there is room for improvement. Managers and team should take the information that was exchanged and use it to help bring improve performance. The development of an individual development plan or PDP is part of the performance review, these two parts must be harnessed for optimal results.
Yet the question remains: How can organizations practically provide the continued assistance that employees need during their day-to-day activities, all year long? the implementation of coaching, mentoring, training, internal lateral programs, short training tasks during briefings sessions, modular departmental training programs, the use of communication departmental monthly meetings, self training throughout modern technology and active participation in learning social media and professional forums are part of the answer.

We have recently implemented modular training programs divided in workshops, short learning bites and employees self educations activities with a high grade of success, all of these initiatives can be utilized to provide support to managers and employees in the exact moment of need.These tools help employees feel more empowered and confident, and of course efficiency and intellectual levels go up as well.

 

Sergio Foti, Director