A Guide to Revamp Your Performance Management Program

You know the story about engagement: It's important. 

Well, we know how to spike it, and it's pretty simple. Make conversations about goals and successes a priority between managers and their team. That's it. Want proof? 

"Employees who have had conversations with their manager in the past six months about their goals and successes are 2.8 times more likely than other employees to be engaged." - Gallup

Nearly tripling the engagement rate of employees would have massive, long-reaching impacts on your workforce, ranging from higher morale and increased profits to better employer brand, safety and more impressive retention rates. Although engagement itself isn't the goal, it's part of the pathway to greater performance. 

A well-executed Performance Management strategy is an effective, communication-based process that leads to engaged employees Here's how to revamp your current Performance Management process and increase your company's performance. 

 What Should Performance Management Accomplish? 

Quality Performance Management should give you insight into the strengths and weaknesses of your team. It's a two-step process: 1) Gather information, and ) Adopt to core competencies. Put like that, it sounds pretty simple. But the output of your Performance Management system needs to: 

  • Create an open atmosphere for two-way communication 
  • Provide frequent touch-points between managers and their teams 
  • Set goals that align all parties' priorities 
  • Solidify long-term employee retention and loyalty 
  • Centralize data for accessible performance tracking 
  • Set the stage for increased engagement and greater performance 

Performance Reviews and Goal Setting

Focus on Engagement

What is engagement? It's more than a feel-good vibe, and it needs to be treated like a hard number, not a soft feeling. Gallup recognizes engaged employees as being:

"highly involved in and enthusiastic about their work and workplace. They are psychological 'owners,' drive performance and innovation, and move the organization forward." 

Sounds pretty good, but, if engagement isn't defined by a warm, fuzzy feeling, how do you square the circle by creating improved business outcomes? You give employees the opportunity to drive the company's future and their own. It's about making expectations clear, developing rewarding relationships and moving together toward positive outcomes. 

Nix the Annual Performance Review 

Annual performance reviews, in absence of any other check-in, is bad practice. If employees only receive feedback once a year, engagement levels can drop and result in all the trends a business doesn't want to see, like dissatisfaction, resentment, a desire to undermine business objectives and contagious bad attitude. 

Disengaged employees are twice as likely to seek new jobs and are estimated to cost the U.S. at least $483 billion dollars a year in lost productivity. - Gallup

Be sure to check in with employees often, even up to once a week. And it's not just about feedback on performance; employees who feel they can talk to their manager about anything are more likely to be engaged (Gallup). Read: An Employers’ Guide to Performance Reviews

6 Onboarding Best Practices Whitepaper Download

Set Goals That Matter to People

A critical part of your Performance Management program needs to be effective goal-setting. We set goals for many reasons:

  • To specify
  • To motivate
  • To drive performance
  • To measure 

But performance goal-setting has become so routine, we often forget a critical piece of it: To connect emotionally with a why. Employees want to chase a feeling of accomplishment; that's why making the goals challenging is important and why making them about passion and purpose is the hook. Read more about the power of great goal setting in our guide to Performance Goals for Employees.

Technology Tools

It’s no secret we make Performance Management software, so call us biased, but when it comes to connecting with your employees and driving their engagement, we feel pretty tuned in. Our Performance Management software is designed not only to be smart, intuitive tech, but also to tap into the psychology of great work performance.

Launching a powerful, revamped Performance Management strategy isn’t difficult. It's really more about centralizing the process, so that once you have a place that tidies up all your data, you can actually analyze it. The BirdDogHR software enables you to easily administer reviews, organize feedback, set and track goals, align team members and even track performance over time. All in one spot; all with easy-to-use technology.

See a demo today to reset and revamp your Performance Management strategy.

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