Article: Optimising performance: Key practices for organisational success

Performance Management

Optimising performance: Key practices for organisational success

Performance management stands as a potent catalyst, empowering organisations to drive optimal organisational performance.
Optimising performance: Key practices for organisational success

Performance management is one of the most powerful processes available to organisations to drive organisational performance. The steps of goal setting, performance feedback, performance assessment and performance-linked reward create a performance loop by defining objectives, monitoring results, measuring results and motivating through rewards. As we delve into the intricacies of performance management, let's uncover the pivotal practices that shape organizational success in the dynamic landscape of today's business environment.

Feedback culture

One of the most effective practices related to PMS is the presence of a strong feedback culture in the organisation. Feedback directly improves performance. Ongoing feedback helps employees understand what they are doing well and what needs to improve. They can improve their performance and consequently organisational performance.  The practice of regular feedback leads to a culture of accountability. When managers provide feedback, they are effectively reiterating the expectations. In the process they provide more clarity around expectations, hence driving a culture of accountability.

Effective coaching

Another powerful building block of effective PMS is effective coaching. Managers have to evolve and mature themselves into the role of coaches. Coaching is a powerful relationship construct between managers and employees. It helps employees elevate themselves to the next level of competency. It elevates the nature of the relationship between the employee and manager to something deeper and more long-lasting. The impact on performance is on account of greater engagement and competence.

Calibration processes

The third powerful building block of PMS is the process of calibration. Calibration creates a forum that allows for a dialogue around individual performance, potential and development. It allows for 360-degree views to come on the table. The process creates an automatic discipline to ensure that rating is based on data and evidence as the forum creates an automatic accountability of stakeholders to put forth their viewpoints backed by evidence. In today’s matrix organisations, individuals work with many stakeholders and this platform brings relevant stakeholders together for an objective discussion on individual performance and potential. Calibration has the power to do away with many of the pitfalls of traditional PMS systems. It can avoid individual biases, recency effects etc. The same forum can be leveraged for career and development conversations for talent.

Continuous performance management (CPM)

The increasingly popular trend in PMS is the Continuous Performance Management (CPM) process.  The regular check-ins in the COM process help create a cadence for regular feedback. The frequency of check-ins can vary but typically once a quarter is a good frequency for meaningful and rich conversations. CPM helps employees become more self-aware as they take the time to reflect upon where they stand against the goals. They become more aware of their blind spots and may become more proactive in addressing those areas.  Timely recording of data and achievements in the COM process also makes for data and evidence-rich conversations during check-ins and year-end conversations. 

Summing it up

Effective PMS implementation requires robust technological support, including seamless platforms for goal-sharing, feedback, and rating. Leadership sponsorship proves critical for success, with calibration discussions and accountability setting the tone for efficient performance management. Managerial proficiency in providing feedback and coaching is paramount, alongside fostering a culture of performance and accountability. As organisations mature through the years, the profound impact of PMS on both organisational performance and culture underscores its enduring value.

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Topics: Performance Management, Leadership

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