Performance Management Tips

Many of us have been in this exact situation. You join a new team and quickly it becomes apparent that the previous manager has not tackled poor performance. Standards may have dropped over a period of time and poor behaviour, for some colleagues, has now become ‘the norm’.

As a new manager it keeps you awake at night thinking about how to best tackle the problem. Maybe there is one member of the team that stands out and you want to address the problem. Our advice is keep it simple and tackle it sooner rather than later! The longer you leave it, the more difficult it will become. Break it down into a journey with steps to achieve along the way.

  1. Review the job description – So often job descriptions are left unchanged, pure as the day when the employee first joined the business! Job descriptions are the foundation of performance management. Make sure job descriptions reflect current roles and responsibilities before you start to formally manage the performance of an employee.
  2. If you don’t already have one, develop a person specification which identifies the skills and behaviours that the post holder will need to have and demonstrate. This will help you with step three.
  3. Conduct a training needs analysis – comparing the employee’s skills and behaviours to that of the person specification.
  4.  Agree on objectives to help the employee to acquire the missing skills and behaviours (consider mentoring, training and coaching).
  5. Set a Performance Improvement Plan with month by month targets and goals. Ensure that the employee agrees that these are achievable before you start.
  6. Meet on a monthly basis to review performance. (Step 6 is the step that as managers we fail at the most frequently. You’ve put in so much effort to get to this stage so don’t fall at the last hurdle!)

For more information, tips and templates why not join our Performance Management and Appraisal Skills training session. Click here for more information.

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