Designing a Performance Management System

“How Do I design, implement and manage a performance management programme? “ We are asked this question on a regular basis.

In my experience a programme of this type is extremely helpful in including staff in the management of the business, making them feel valued, included, and part of the team. They know that they can ask for, and will receive, the support they need. Run well, it can engender loyalty, encourage staff retention and help grow the business.

performance-management-systemIt gives staff the opportunity to think about their career, where it is going, and how they need to develop themselves for their future.

It allows each line manager and their direct reports to understand the factors that are affecting performance and how barriers to excellent performance can be overcome. They will also discuss each person’s aspirations for their career.

So it opens up the conversation about performance and career goals and allows everyone to optimise their performance.

They understand the “direction of travel “of the business and can see how they fit into the plan, and what they need to achieve to get there. They don’t need to be brought on board, they are already there .They can see and suggest things they can contribute that may not be obvious to management

In short, if it is well executed in can create a cohesive, dedicated team , all travelling in the same direction and pulling together to achieve group targets. A team is greater than the sum of its parts, management just need to lead, and no coercion is required. Everyone’s energy is dissipated usefully.

But a word of warning. If badly executed it can be disastrous. If managers do not use it correctly, working with their team to get the best performance, and instead take the opportunity to recite a list of complaints about staff, they will be seriously demotivated.

So some preparation and training are essential.

To use this management tool effectively, it is essential to have job descriptions in place, and it is helpful to have agreed targets to measure performance by. You need an appraisal meeting document and an action plan. Then you need a meeting, the associated paperwork, and follow up system. Managers and staff must be trained in the process.
This is beginning to sound like a lot of hard work. Is it worth it? Yes, definitely, absolutely.

In my experience this is the single most important management tool you should implement.

Ok, the first year will require some effort, but once the system is in place it will run like clockwork and pay enormous dividends.

So what I am going to do is work thorough each of those requirements with you –the job description, agreed targets to measure performance, appraisal meeting document, action plan, follow up system. Managers training, appraisal meeting, paperwork completed

We have already discussed this in great detail on this site so I will not repeat that, but direct you to the appropriate sections. These modules will mainly concentrate on the paperwork you need, in response to feedback from you

So revisit these links where we have already talked about performance management.

Performance management and appraisals

Performance management

Giving and receiving feedback