After re-examining and reframing how you think about employee performance management, it’s time to compile your insights into a new strategic approach to a new performance management plan.

Here’s how to establish a robust performance management process for your teams and employees, with a focus on the continual development of your people’s performance.

Assess your current performance management process

Think about your company’s mission and needs and define what you would like to achieve moving forward. What accomplishments are you determined to hit in your company that can be supported through performance management? Do you want to strengthen your teams? Launch your new product feature on time? Hit your sales target for the quarter?

Set your objective and goals

Once your mission has been identified, set the objectives that you want to achieve and set the goals that will help drive you there. For example, when it comes to team building, many organizations want to realize their employees’ full potential, which is done through generating more meaningful conversations and collaborations between managers and employees, and supporting better skills training and career development, with the goal fulfillment of improving employee performance over the long term.

Consult with key players

The successful implementation of a new performance management process involves a collaborative process between leaders, managers, and employees. Consult with key players—including your senior management and other decision makers across different departmental units—and collect their insights on what they envision performance management to look like at your organization.

Create an action plan

Consolidate those perspectives and create an action plan for your company-wide performance management strategy. Define team goals and then break them down even further by identifying individual goals at the employee level to align with and support the fulfillment of your company’s strategic plan.

Share your new performance management strategy

Validate the changes being made by communicating the reasoning, the objectives, and the action plan with your whole team. A communication strategy to get everyone in your workplace on board with the plan is necessary. Buy-in can be crucial to the success of the program; if interest wanes, it’s dif cult for the program to succeed. Provide training for managers and employees and set a target date for the implementation of changes.

Establish company-wide OKRs

Link individuals’ contributions to the organization’s priorities and goals through establishing company-wide OKRs, or Objectives and Key Results. One suggested OKR framework to use: SMART goals. Determining and setting clearly defined SMART goals that are actionable (through steps) and measurable (through tracking) involves this framework:

  • Specific. Setting expectations of what, when, and how much.
  • Measurable. Milestones to track progress and to motivate employees to achieve.
  • Achievable. Success is attainable, but with stretch goals added as well to push further.
  • Relevant. Consider the impact of every goal to the overall corporate strategy.
  • Timely. Keep your goals grounded within a timeframe to create a sense of urgency.

Keep track of progress

Monitor your team’s progress on their goals and encourage employees to track their own progress. This information is needed for managers to review productivity, as awareness will allow management to step in with assistance, coaching, timeline adjustments, or other resources if needed or to acknowledge and reward successes. This information is also helpful during the appraisal process to inform management of the steps involved in reaching a goal or to highlight past and ongoing successes.

Establish regular check-ins

Set up a regular cadence of touchpoints between department managers and their reports. Digital apps, such as the manager success platform Hazel, can facilitate this process in a means that is convenient to all.

Evaluate the effectiveness of processes

Continuously evaluate the effectiveness of your new performance management process. Determine whether or not the plan is boosting performance, producing the expected results, and contributing to the overall success of the company. Based on what works and what doesn’t work, refine, adjust, and improve, and communicate any progress and timeline changes in regards to performance management with your team so they are aware.

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