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What is Performance Management?

PERFORMANCE Management is a critical factor in ensuring that results are achieved, and that those results are in keeping with the company’s vision and strategy. Performance Management simply means reviewing & assessing the performance of your company based on the everyday activities, efficiencies and effectiveness of your team. Measuring performance is a profound way to denote what is working and what is not working. Communicating those measurements and assessment scores effectively is the science of managing your team. This critical HR function encompasses multiple elements and is a revolving concept that should be part of every culture. What is monitored or measured is what gets gone. In my experience, if team members are aware that their performance is being measured, they are more likely to be propelled to ensure that their performance is in keeping with expectations; assuming those expectations are clearly delineated from the start.

Measuring performance is a profound way to denote what is working and what is not working.

At this point, it is important to make a distinction between performance management and performance appraisals as these concepts are widely confused. Performance appraisal is one aspect of performance management and is usually a formal review once or twice a year. The process assesses the team’s current and preceding performance and is also one aspect of performance management. Performance management however is a complete and regular assessment of your team from the start of their employment to the end of their employment. In performance management you are not only keeping score of a team member’s performance, but you are also regularly providing coaching, guidance and training to ensure that you give your team the best opportunity to be successful at their tasks.

This is also a great way to identify anomalies and correct them before it is too late – an issue in most organizations. In such cases the employee’s performance is usually below average and has been for a while. Unfortunately, without the correct measures to address those issues employees face punitive disciplinary action up to and leading to dismissal.

Performance management is extremely effective if implemented correctly and is also a great way to improve your team’s engagement and motivation levels. This occurs because your team members will greatly appreciate your active interest in their wellbeing and performance. Ultimately, they are looking for recognition and praise; to feel that what they do is important and of value to the company, which is one of the cornerstones of employee satisfaction. When done in the right way even areas of underperformance that needs to be improved will be appreciated, as long as the direction is positive. This generates success for both the individual and the company.

This is one of the best ways to continuously ensure that your team efforts and actions are aligned with your goals. However, I must underscore that it is only successful if adapted to and implemented properly.

Some key factors of Performance Management-
To ensure there is a much better tracking/recognition of performance to keep all employees focused on making significant improvements and to ensure that the process is objective and fair.
Address underperformance & identify critical behaviours that drive high performance in the existing role.
Foster partnership, collaboration, and candid communication between managers and employees through regular feedback and coaching.

The below is my recommendation on a step by step process on what your performance management system should take into consideration.

1. Vision statement.
2. Strategy to achieve the Vision.
3. Review the Organisations Structure to determine whether the structure can support the strategy.
a. Create a plan to review the Organizational structure if required
b. Once in place, review and assess the job functions needed to support the Organization structure.
4. Ensure the functions are aligned with the correct talent.
5. Ensure that everyone is sensitized on the plan, process, and implementation.
6. Explain the KPI’s for each job function.
7. Provide guidance and coaching regularly to ensure that your talent has what is needed and required to get the job done.
8. Create scorecards to record your teams’ performance.
9. Meet with your team regularly (informally and formally) to assess desired results vs. actual results.

Make performance management a key element of your company’s culture.

— V.Kim. Eugene
CHRC-Certified HR Consultant

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