5 top ways to recast your organization’s performance management

organization's performance management

It’s no secret that performance management is an important component for the growth and success of the organization. This is the reason that the last few years have been an opportune time for organizations to recast their traditional approaches to performance management. However, not every organization has a clear grasp on how to implement and practice performance management in this modern era.

The traditional performance reviews and approaches to feedback are often so vague that they actually end up making performance worse about one-third of the time. Yes, you read that right. The traditional approach has been ascertained to be ineffective at driving performance improvements. Even if it has any kind of a positive impact with regards to lifting engagement or performance, it lasts for only 3 to 4 weeks as per a study done by Workhuman. The bigger impetus to change is employees’ ever-growing discontentment with the current process and their desire for more frequent and timely feedback regarding their contribution. 

organization's performance management

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Future-oriented organizations are beginning to understand the true potential of performance management, which can never be achieved by the old and dusted performance management framework. By shifting traditional performance management to agile and continuous performance management – established on the foundation of ongoing feedback, regular check-ins, and periodic recognition instants – organizations can optimize performance by facilitating employees to work at their full potential. 

Improving performance management isn’t complicated at all if you are familiar with the best ways to recast the performance management of your organization. So, let us take a look at the best 5 ways for recasting your organization’s performance management:

1. Encourage employees to participate actively in their own success

Now is the time to equip your employees with tools and technologies that will allow and encourage them to engage proactively in regular conversations about their work as well as empower them to own their development and growth. Establishing objectives with their management that align with strategic business objectives and share purpose will help the employees to understand how integral they are to the organization’s success and feel more connected to their path. This also provides them with a greater sense of meaning in their work, which has a huge influence on their overall employee experience. 

2. Create a foundation of trust through a culture of positivity and authenticity

Trust is placed at the core of effective performance management. Establishing trust needs cultivating a culture of positivity and authenticity, where employees feel safe to give, receive and ask for feedback from managers and colleagues. The majority of the employees fear feedback as it operated in the real of judgment. However, when you establish a new mindset towards feedback that is focused on growth and development, your employees are likely to feel more honest and open about the challenges coming their way. Moreover, you also increase the odds for your employees to receive your feedback in a more favorable manner since they know it’s coming from a place of trust and encouragement. 

3. Approach as a coach and mentor

Managers should be pushed to view their primary role as coaching employees to consistently enhance their performance over time, rather than orchestrating, assessing, and trying to prove their contribution. It is believed that managers should approach conversations while keeping two things in mind – greater curiosity and greater humility. Be a learn-it-all personal and not a know-it-all one. Always be open to accepting that the person closest to the action may be familiar with the things that you don’t, and also may have a better clue about what might need to happen next. Your employees and teams truly see where, when, and how the work gets done and therefore, provide a broader and deeper insight into the work which the manager doesn’t have. 

4. Make weekly check-ins a top priority 

The best time for feedback is always in real-time as the behavior occurs and not after days, weeks, or months. This makes sure that the managers and employees get the benefit of addressing performance issues on an immediate basis. Your employees want their objectives to be clearly defined upfront, followed by frequent check-ins and ongoing feedback that is fresh in the mind of both the managers and employees. Check-ins are an easy and quick way to monitor the development discussions and tactical updates between you and your employees. Having these open and frank conversations in real-time, on a regular basis results in establishing human relationships that are based on trust. 

5. Change from high-stakes, low-frequency feedback to low-stakes, high-frequency conversations

Annual performance reviews and rating influences decisions about your employees’ income, advancement, and continued employment. Such high stakes produce stress and anxiety for both the employees and managers. For the majority of the employees, the formal, once-a-year performance review is the only occasion they are able to receive feedback and they may feel blindsided on uncovering an issue with their performance months later when it gets too late for them to fix anything. Continuous performance management takes the contrary approach – ongoing, regular, casual conversations that are often planned and if not, they occur organically within the flow of the work. 

These 5 steps are highly essential for recasting the performance management program for your organization. For more assistance regarding performance management and employee engagement concerns, contact us today! 

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Gaurav Sabharwal


Gaurav is the CEO of JOP (Joy of Performing), an OKR and high-performance enabling platform. With almost two decades of experience in building businesses, he knows what it takes to enable high performance within a team and engage them in the business. He supports organizations globally by becoming their growth partner and helping them build high-performing teams by tackling issues like lack of focus, unclear goals, unaligned teams, lack of funding, no continuous improvement framework, etc. He is a Certified OKR Coach and loves to share helpful resources and address common organizational challenges to help drive team performance. Read More

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