February 9, 2010

Five Unexpected Benefits of Performance Management

Managing performance can be a challenge, especially where you have an organizational process to fulfil.

Outside the more obvious reasons for using such a process, there are more to go for, which will help managers realize why it is a useful tool to embrace fully.

Apart from the individual benefits for each one of your people, there is some incredible additional value that you can add with managing performance, rather than by letting it be a chore.

Check these out…

•    Succession Planning

Where you focus on the development of your people as part of managing their performance, you will ensure that you are growing capability within your team for the future as well.

With individual development, you provide for the challenges that happen when you lose people from your team.

When they leave for the new challenges you’ve prepared them for maybe; geography moves them on or even they retire, you have new, eager people that are ready to rock and roll.

•    Creating Momentum

When performance management is used to its best advantage, successes follow success. For each individual developing their skills and output, a mood of growth envelops the team members.

As your people sense that their capabilities are of value, they do more; create more; take risks and try on new possibilities and between them all, this rubs off.

Each tries more and achieves more, creating an upward spiral of success and a momentum of the ‘can do’ attitude so valuable in developing team spirit that synergizes the combined efforts of individuals.

•    The Culture

Once successes are achieved, not only is there a sense of what’s possible, you people are also focused on each other too.

They support each other as a team, rather than simple as individuals engrossed in themselves.

The culture will be one of mutual synergy, so powerful in making new, exciting things happen out of often almost nothing.

•    Building on What They’re Good At

When there is a culture of success, it comes where each of your people is fully aligned with their actions.

Some call this ‘being in the flow’.

This total focus, concentration and energy makes things happen so effectively that it becomes almost effortless.

A stream of activities that just seem to, well, work, is the return you get from where your people are building on the strengths they have with your encouragement and support, your coaching and developmental challenges.

When you work with people on where their true capabilities are, more becomes available from them and they rise to the new challenges you find for them.

When working in areas where people are in their ‘good at’ zone, much more becomes possible for them.

Your focus as a manager is to find where their performance ‘hot spots’ are and leverage that however you can, safe in the knowledge that you are delivering a win-win to them, so the results are perfect.

•    Creative Coping Strategies

Let’s be honest, no-one is a perfect employee – not even you!

So, there will be times where they are challenged more than is good for them in areas where ‘flow’ is a mystery.

In these gaps, it’s always a valuable support to acknowledge this together with them and help them find new ways to resolve these elements of the role they struggle with.

These solutions might be helping them delegate; helping them create workarounds; creative recruitment strategies; learning from poor performance and more.

By coaching them to solutions that overcome the areas where they aren’t fully at home, you will support and encourage the areas where they are excellent too, without wasting time wringing hands over the effort they need to make in unproductive areas for them.

So, let’s keep the activities that they can’t describe themselves and being ‘good at’ easy too!

There’s more to managing performance than the obvious chore of filling in bits of paper to make the process work and when you recognize the value, you will be much more ready to invest some time in it.

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Filed under Blog, Developing Your People, Focus on Results, Management Basics by Martin

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