In order to engage in business growth, we must shift from the traditional performance management, a process that is no longer working. On a primary level, traditional performance reviews are used to document an employee’s performance and used to determine if he or she should get a raise. On a strategic level, the purpose of performance management is to align the organization’s goals with the employee’s goals to drive higher performance through increased engagement.
However, the performance process is debatable. First off, managers use these criteria to determine if an employee deserves a raise. However, competencies and behaviors are not easily quantifiable, which leaves a huge element of subjectivity. This further causes controversy when reviews are not completed in the right manner. Many companies have recognized that this process is ineffective and are acknowledging the need for a change.
Listed below are some tips on how to shift away from performance management, taken from the article “8 ways to shift from the traditional performance management process”:
Allow employees to have some power
If an organization plans on abandoning the performance process, consider leaving the schedule top-down review along with it. Instead, set the expectation that employees should ask for coaching, resources, insights, and yes, feedback when they want it and need it. Managers must make it clear and distinct that they are there to provide advice and support. Change the review process into a conversation initiated by the employee, that way the employee is only seeking when he or she is ready to talk about the future. This will allow you to have a richer conversation, and a healthier relationship going forward.
Focus on future performances
The heart of the performance process is looking back at things that happened in the past. As a result, employees typically receive negative feedback instead of positive. Receiving feedback may be difficult for some, especially if it’s negative and many people become reactive instead of being proactive. Instead of emphasizing what employees did or didn’t do last year, take the time to focus on what they can do in the future to achieve their goals. Look at their strengths, skills, and capabilities and explain how to build on them. Take the time to learn and explore their interests, the experiences they want to gain, and roles or future positions they like to hold.
It’s a given that organizations only want to pursue activities that are efficient and effective. So it’s understandable why companies want to build one common standardized solution for performance and use it across the organization with little concern for employee types or cultural differences. Instead, why not build more flexible systems that allow workers to choose what worked for them, either as an individual or as a workgroup inside the organization? An organization that designs programs differently for groups or individuals based on certain needs can be very powerful. These programs and policies can accurately reflect the maturity, requirements, location, and desires of the people they support. A process that allows a customization approach can be very beneficial.
Many organizations realize that the performance process is outdated and understand that certain changes are necessary. Shifting away from these practices may be difficult, especially for larger companies. However, you have the choice to cling to an outdated review process or evolved with the new market to inspire and engage your workers. Read more about “8 ways to shift from the traditional performance management process”.
Opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and not of The HR Gazette or its team members.