January 2007 Newsletter

In this issue:
Four steps to high-performing employees:

Some consider performance management a mysterious practice that takes oodles of training to do well. Others do it instinctively. But what is performance management? 

When carried out effectively, performance management recognizes and acknowledges employee contributions.

It's really just communication or better still, an ongoing communication between supervisors and employees to support one over-riding goal: to accomplish an organization's strategic objectives.

You might be surprised to learn that managing for performance takes only four strategies:

          1) Planning

          2) Monitoring and feedback

          3) Development

          4) Reward and recognition

Let’s examine each strategy or building block of high performance in turn.

  1. Planning - Planning means setting clear goals for your organization and for your employees. Your plan can include a company mission statement, but it must include each employee's job duties and performance goals.
  2. Monitoring and feedback - Making plans and setting goals does no good unless supervisors closely monitor employees’ performances and give clear feedback when necessary. To follow a performance management process, praise and give constructive criticism regularly. The key is to “catch” employees in the act of doing well and praise them immediately or to see their errors and correct mistakes right away…and in the right way: constructively and in private.
  3. Development - Just as you give careful directions and a road map so travelers can arrive at their destination on time and without mishap, with performance management you must give employees any skills, training or resources they need to do their job. Think of creative ways to develop employees so they grow and climb the ladder.
  4. Reward and recognition - Though this is the last building block on the list, do not overlook it. You can recognize an employee with simple praise or with a detailed program including public thanks, extra paid time off and reserved parking. You can even include increased compensation or promotions. Think creatively and match your rewards to performance.

So there you have them – the four building blocks of performance managing. Can you see how these support employee development and organizational improvement?

Just remember: Each building block is essential. Omitting or neglecting any of them is like leaving out a key step when building a skyscraper. The structure can’t possibly be as sturdy as when each step is done fully and with care.

If you decide to use performance management, you most likely will find that your employees succeed beyond your wildest dreams.  The real reward, however, will go to your organization.

A study from Gallup
Look at this study from the Gallup Organization:

Recently, analyzing relationships between employee attitudes and critical business outcomes such as revenue, profitability, customer loyalty and employee retention, the Gallup Organization studied 100,000 employees from 2,500 organizations in 12 industries. It identified about a dozen employee attitudes as paramount in managing and improving the workplace. They included:

§ I know what is expected of me at work (planning).

§ In the last 6 months, someone at work has talked to me about my progress (monitoring).

§ I have the materials and equipment I need to do my work right (developing).

§ In the last 7 days, I have received recognition or praise for doing good work (rewarding).

Is this what your workers would say? 

Sales Tip Of The Month:

Listen more, talk less

Good salespeople know what their clients need. Not because they read minds, but because they listen. When they ask a question, they pause for the answer and then attentively listen when the answer comes. They know that by listening they can determine how to service a client’s needs and then they can make a sale.

Record your next sales call. Focus on keeping your client talking while you practice listening. If your client stops talking, give him several seconds to continue. If the pause persists, ask a follow-up question such as, "Can you elaborate on that?" Above all, don’t interrupt.

When the call ends, analyze the recording. How many minutes did you talk? For how many did you listen? Did you listen more than you talked?

Technical Corner:

Identifying job fit purposefully (without the guesswork)
The first of many Department of Labor guidelines on occupational assessment tools states that "assessment tools must be used in a purposeful manner." In other words, managers using the tools must understand how they work.

So how do Profile International's assessment tools meet this guideline? Consider the ProfileXT™. Our ProfileXT™ assessment tool helps managers find a fit to the jobs they are trying to fill. Here’s how it works:

Using appropriate measures to assess employee behavioral traits, interests and thinking style, employers identify their company's top performers, those employees working at the highest level. From that information, we at Profiles build a Job Match Pattern they can then use to identify top performers applying for a given position. Further, we help managers understand how to use this tool to find the proper fit for their job openings.

Employees who fit well into their jobs exhibit a higher level of job satisfaction. They come to work more often, change jobs less frequently and perform superbly overall. They are able to be successful doing what comes naturally to them. With Profiles, managers can take the guesswork out of identifying these employees.

MGA can help put people in jobs where the demands match their abilities, the stimulation matches their interest, and they have the greatest opportunity to succeed.

Never forget, you already have a significant investment in your people through salary, benefits, recruitment and training. This investment can add up to hundreds of thousands of dollars per year, per person. With MGA you can maximize that investment.

News Articles     Search