SERVICES: Performance Management: A key Business Process for the New World of Work

Alignment.  People today juggle a variety of priorities: their ongoing job, their role in business strategies, and various ad hoc requirements from stakeholder agendas and unanticipated challenges.  PM is the vehicle for continually sorting these out – and ensuring that goals stay in focus.

Culture.  Enough talk!  It’s time to live the engagement, diversity, accountability, respect, and customer focused culture described in posters on the wall.  PM contains key culture-creating conversations (strategy and goal conversations, dialogues about performance and development, feedback of all kinds and in all directions).  PM is the living value system.

Transformation.  Most organizations are on a bigger change journey.  Use the redesign of your PM process to accelerate the larger shift in how your business is positioned externally and how it operates internally.

A Business Process. Traditional Performance Management (PM) , as most organizations practice it, is primarily– the responsibility of HR, focused on pay, ratings, rewards, recognition. promotion.  This focus on personnel actions makes it difficult to implement strategies and unleash creative risk taking and information sharing. People deflate goals so they can “exceed” them. Goals and written intentions meet requirements of forms and electronic support tools, where they languish until resurrected for often perfunctory appraisal activities.

It’s not enough to replace the more demotivating aspects of PM with appreciative conversations and a development focus. Agility and deep problem solving require people to talk about problems and their causes. In addition, just changing the focus of feedback doesn’t address the more fundamental issue: the mindset of PM as something the business does for personnel rather than business purposes remains.

Performance Management to Integrate Multiple Agendas. The traditional view of goal alignment is that work cascades down the formal organization structure and that the most efficient way to get work done is to break it into progressively smaller bits under the watchful eye of a supervisor. 

While extrinsic controls and cascades of goals have a place in today’s changing world of work, they are a diminishing part of a bigger story.  People in today’s organizations find themselves working in many workflows – on projects, task forces, in horizontal supply chains as well as vertical hierarchies.   Individuals are often the only ones who know their full portfolio of work. The New Performance Management must adapt to this reality. Individuals have to manage their own performance, while institutional leaders help them to link with larger strategies and balance tradeoffs.

This CHANGING world of performance requires a radical shift in thinking, leading, and working.  That is where ACT Performance Management comes in. It Aligns people, creates an agile and high performance Culture , and helps to Transform the overall business capacity for better performance in the future

A Breakthrough in Performance Management

You can’t fix performance management by changing the forms or the systems. You can’t fix it by removing negative feedback from the picture. You can’t fix it by primarily focusing on employee development. These may all be part of a solution, but what most businesses need is a  fundamental rethink of WHY and HOW to “manage” and unleash aligned performance.  And, it is important to answer the question: WHOSE process is it: HR’s? Management’s? 

If the health and effectiveness of PM is not Management’s responsibility, then your business loses a critical opportunity to mine the real power of Performance Management: to ensure Alignment, Culture and business Transformation. HR can provide a vital support and training. But PM is a business process that is vital to strategy implementation , overall business performance, as well as to employee empowerment and engagement.

Let us help you transform your PM process for your changing world of work. Call us to:

  • Review your PM system and its effects and opportunities
  • Help you design your PM approach and integrate PM into your main business processes (strategy development, budgeting, unit and individual agile goal setting, performance results tracking and feedback at all levels.)
  • Provide programs  and materials to guide managers and employees (both sides) in shared responsibility, respectful, direct, purposeful and aligned goal setting and ongoing feedback/problem solving processes
  • Support you in managing the implementation of the New Performance Management so that you get the ACT benefits: Alignment,  Culture, and Transformation.