Organizational Management – Performance Management
In this installment of our guide to organizational management we look at performance management…
Performance management plays a key role in ensuring that an organization, including its subsystems such as employees, teams, departments and processes, are working in a way that achieve the overriding goals of the company. Performance management comes in the form of general reviews, or more specific reviews of quality, quantity, time-frame relevance, or cost.
It should be undertaken at regular, pre-determined intervals, and also if it becomes suddenly apparent that a particular subsystem is underperforming. The same standard procedure is followed in most organizations, though exactly how the steps are carried out can vary widely, depending on the focus of the performance efforts and who is in charge of carrying it out.
Step one in the process is to prepare a documented plan that sets out the desired results, the way the results will be measured and the standards the performance are based on. The plan needs to be prioritized with first-level targets being at the top, and drilling down for each first-level target where it makes sense to do so. The results must be realistic and able to be achieved or there will be no value derived from the exercise. Finally, staff needs to be made aware of what the performance goals are.
Ongoing observations and measurements should then be conducted to track performance over the allocated timeframe. Feedback about performance should be exchanged throughout in order to maximize performance level.
Once the stated time frame for review is up, a performance appraisal or review should occur in order to analyze the results of the review and determine if the performance meets or exceeds the expectations, or if performance has fallen below the expectations.
Ideally, when beginning the process, an incentive should be established for performance that meets or exceeds the applicable standard(s).
That incentive needs to be given once the review has concluded. In cases, however, where performance is judged to be inferior, then the performance plan can be tweaked to act as more of performance improvement plan. The process must then start over and be repeated until the performance meets the stated goals or until the subsystem or standard has changed.
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