50% of managers fail to mange poor performance, a recent survey said. Should we just get rid of those poor performers and hire more talented people? Oh that we had the luxury … and of course getting rid of poor performers that way means you have to manage people out of the business anyway, back to square one. Chances are you’ve got loads of untapped talent already, and of course talented people still need to be managed / led, so the answer is not simple. I do see the management of performance and employee engagement to be fundamental for successful business and fulfilled people – at all levels. Being candid, telling the truth, giving useful feedback are essential skills / competencies for managers. Somehow, across many sectors and geographies it seems to be a capability sorely missing. So much written, so many initiatives taken, not sure what progress we are making. Personally I love the Strengths works of Marcus Buckingham, see: http://bit.ly/hRqGzF and the Q12 work of the Gallup Organisation, see: http://bit.ly/eQPE3f Emotional Intelligence is essential, as mentioned above, and EQi is a great tool for raising individual’s awareness see: http://bit.ly/fsiGrK followed by coaching the effects can be truly transformational. Lots of tools, and to get results it takes hard work, application and commitment both from the organisation and the coaches. Maybe we need an army dedicated to this initiative!
So often organisations, whatever their size or industry sector drive a ‘targets first’ culture. Surely if the work gets done by the people we should switch to a ‘people first’ approach, which ensures that:
- employees really know what’s expected of them and are treated as capable and resourceful
- have the tools and capabilities to do their job
- know what the organisation stands for, where it’s going and why its going there.
Too simple? I don’t think so, I believe that often we clutter management improvement initiatives with too much detail, too many models, too much to remember, causing anxiety amongst the management community of, ‘am I doing this right?’
I believe it’s absolutely possible to design an intervention that:
- raises awareness in managers about themselves and their capabilities in dealing with performance
- gives THEM simple tools to tackle performance
- hones their skills using real live issues that are concerning them now
- supports them through a mixture of 1 to 1 and group coaching, (may also include creating a team of internal coaches).
- keeps going for a good while, doesn’t just stop and leave people high and dry