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Performance Management Systems: The Keys To Success

Posted by Louis Flory

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7/25/14 12:19 PM


Performance management usually conjures up thoughts of a formal HR system with many rules and concrete procedures that govern the way that employee performance is evaluated. However, because of changes to the modern working world and the relative lack of success of traditional performance management (PM) policies, it has become necessary to change the way that your company thinks about this important subject. The new era of thought on PM emphasizes informality, performance, and employee engagement.

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In a PDRI article about new rules for performance management, Elaine Pulakos and Rose Hanson lay out three new PM rules that will boost retention and improve your company’s bottom line. These rules emphasize a shift away from the rigidity of traditional PM systems. For optimum success, you should read and understand these rules and then consider ways that you may be able to apply them within your facilities.

Instead of focusing on the formal PM system, emphasize the day-to-day actions that govern business outcomes

Pulakos writes that being a good coach, carving out time in your schedule for employees, and being interested in their success are all actions linked with higher success and lower turnover. These are all activities that can be done every day at your organization. The idea is that performance management is not just an event that happens once or twice a year. Instead, it should be an ongoing consideration that governs your daily interactions with your employees.

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Improve your informal performance management system

Pulakos focuses on the informal PM system in three regards: vision, action, and growth. Vision defines the alignment between company goals and employee activities: to help your facilities in this area, focus on day-to-day conversations and spur of the moment discussions about how everyone’s job fits together to facilitate the success of the organization. Action defines the process of setting expectations: to succeed with this part of the informal PM system, you should give feedback on performance in real-time and clarify employee goals during informal conversations. Growth defines the way that your team develops and learns: to bolster your facilities in this portion of an informal PM system, make sure you provide employees with the right guidance at the right time, since a huge majority of learning occurs during common on-the-job experiences.

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Make sure that the informal PM system is ingrained in the company’s DNA

Part of ensuring that the tenets of a more informal performance management system are thoroughly understood by facilities employees is providing them with proper guidance and education. However, a large amount of responsibility falls to managers and company leadership. Your managers and leaders set the tone for PM, so they must be held accountable for representing the key elements of effective performance management. When leadership is able to successfully embody this approach, it becomes a part of the culture of your organization.

The thrust of Pulako’s new PM system is that reducing the emphasis on formal systems that are rarely utilized and shifting towards a more informal system that can be applied every day will lead to better performance. By improving your management techniques, you will improve employee morale, increase worker effectiveness, and enhance the overall productivity of your facilities. Make sure that you take some time to internalize these three points and consider ways that you might be able to apply them to your company’s workplace environment.

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Topics: Contingent Workforce Management, Human Resources, Contingent Workers, Safety