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HR 101: Performance Management

I see it all the time when I am examining an organization's method of evaluating their talent:

  • They have a system but they do not use it consistently throughout the year.

  • Their system is designed to only be completed annually (This is awful by the way! There is nothing more devastating to employee morale than hearing about a year's worth of failures!)

  • They cannot explain how their system evaluates their talent, but they have one.

  • Or they just do not have one at all.

Think about this: your employees are the single most powerful force driving your business growth, and yet most employers have no way of ensuring they are doing just that. Or worse, they have a subjective system that is based upon the bias of the manager. A performance management system should give leaders the ability to make decisions about their employees. Do I need to give more training? Are employees performing but not motivated? Are there employees that just are not a great fit for my organization?


The reality is that it does not take an overly complicated system with charts and graphs to understand how your people are doing. In the end, performance management comes down to 2 very simply questions:

  1. How well are your employees performing at their job?

  2. How good of a teammate are your employees?

There are numerous programs and systems out there that can help answer these questions. Which system is best is determined by the organizational identity, and values. But at the end of the day, as an organizational leader, I want to be able to find some systematic way of answering these questions to the extent that I can then make decisions based upon them.


So what about your organization? Can you answer those 2 questions? Do you know what to do with the information once you do answer them?


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