Improve Performance Management & Employee Engagement by Building Employee Alignment
In a recent study, researchers found that one of the key obstacles to successfully executing a business strategy was the lack of ownership of the strategy or execution plans by key employees. Creating alignment between employees and the business strategy is a key driver of employee engagement.
What is Performance Management?
Performance management is not an annual performance review meeting. It is not preparing for that meeting nor is it a self-evaluation. It’s not a performance review form nor is it a performance management tool. Many organizations use performance management tools and forms to track organizational goals and improvements, they are not the process of performance management.
Performance management is the process of creating an organizational climate in which people are empowered to perform to the best of their abilities.
The performance management system begins when a job is defined and linked to organizational goals. It ends when an employee exits your organization.
Performance management defines your engagement with an employee at every step of career, including how they are onboarded, recognized, and promoted. Performance management turns every interaction with an employee into a learning occasion.
According to David Ulrich, author of The HR Value Proposition, “performance management systems consist of two basic elements: measurements and rewards. Performance management systems also have four important features:
- they differentiate high performing teams and individuals from low performing teams and individuals
- they are simple but complete, measuring both results and behaviors. This captures past performance and provides important predictors of future performance.
- They draw data from several sources to ensure credibility with employees and impact on organizational goals
- They provide measurements for key benchmarks such as employee performance, leadership effectiveness, goal setting, and organizational climate”
What is a Performance Management Process?
To maximize organizational effectiveness, companies must motivate individuals and groups toward a common goal. I believe that a solid performance management system must be a dynamic and adaptable process that cascades throughout the organization, from the C-suite, to the individual employee. Since performance management is one of the most challenging areas of responsibility in the field of human resources, a good system must be well-conceived and implemented. Ultimately, the success of the performance management system can also determine the success of the organization.
It is important to note that no “silver bullet” exists that can be used as a solution to maximizing employee performance. What I do know is that a performance management system that balances the goals of the organization with the abilities and characteristics of its workforce will have the greatest chance of success.
When you partner with me to develop your performance management system, I’ll help you ensure that your system:
- supports your company strategy
- identifies key performance objectives
- relates to all other HR systems
- maintains compliance with applicable legislation
- increases the accuracy of the performance review data
- fosters dialogue between managers and employees
- encourages employee engagement and development
My Process for Designing a Performance Management System
- Planning — I will help you define organizational goals, what needs to be done, and suggest the approach that should be taken
- Action — next, I’ll assist in developing the performance management tools and leadership training that need to be implemented to accomplish the plan
- Monitoring — I’ll coach your managers and leaders to track the actions necessary to improve organizational effectiveness
- Review — I will help you design the formal performance review and feedback system that will deliver the results of employees’ efforts
Performance management requires that everyone in your organization shares responsibility for its success. My role in the process is to serve as your strategic partner in accomplishing the desired outcomes of the performance management system.
“There are only three measurements that tell you nearly everything you need to know about your organization’s overall performance: employee engagement, customer satisfaction, and cash flow. It goes without saying that no company, small or large, can win over the long run without energized employees who believe in the mission and understand how to achieve it.”
Jack Welch, Retired CEO, General Electric
What is Employee Engagement & Why is it Important?
Employee engagement is the strength of an employee’s emotional connection and level of commitment to their organization.
The importance of employee engagement is simple: high levels of employee engagement reduces staff turnover, improves productivity and efficiency, retains customers at a higher rate, and positively impacts the company’s bottom line.
When employees are engaged, it infuses everything they do with purpose, energy, enthusiasm, and a commitment to organizational goals.
Watch This Seminar to learn more about how to use Employee Alignment in your company.
What is Employee Engagement is Not!
Employee engagement is not about satisfied employees. Satisfied employees do not seek to drive business results.
Employee engagement is not about happy employees. Happy employees impact organizational climate but may lack a commitment to impacting organizational goals.
Company’s must focus their efforts on improving employee engagement through proper goal setting and aligning employees with the company strategy.
How I help your organizations build line of sight that will improve employee engagement:
Developing & Validating Your Core Message.
First, I will help you design a communication plan that will drive employee understanding of company strategy and the reasons behind it. Focus groups are a great way to test the message and give employees a say in how they’d like to hear the message conveyed, which improves employee engagement.
Defining Leadership’s Role.
My next step is helping senior managers understand their role in the process and helping them bring the company strategy to life for their employees. This step sets the proper organizational climate for the company strategy.
Devising an Interactive Approach.
During this step, I assist your management team, in cooperation with key line employees, in establishing processes that support, and an employee recognition system that reinforces, the importance of the company strategy.
To prove the value of helping employees connect to the business, it is critical to establish clear outcomes and organizational goals at the outset. I will help you develop a few critical metrics that can be measured over time and will definitively determine the success of the company strategy.
In his book Fearless HR author David Forman illustrates the value of employee engagement this way:
By using this collaborative approach to developing messages that are meaningful and consistent, educating leaders on their role in the process, continuing reinforcement of messages through leadership actions and organizational initiatives, and measuring success, I believe you CAN win the hearts, minds and hands of your employees as they HELP YOU achieve business success.
“You have to treat your employees like customers. When you treat them right, they will treat your customers right. This has been a powerful competitive weapon for us.”
Herb Kelleher, Retired CEO, Southwest Airlines