High performance culture – how do you generate one?
Improving business performance
High performance culture – performance is key to your organisation’s survival. You cannot afford to under perform. But how do you generate a high performance culture?
Here are some tips!
1. Show leadership from the top
Those at the top of the organisation must be committed to a high performance culture. If necessary, they must be prepared to change to ensure this. The performance management framework must operate throughout the organization from top to bottom. Those at the top need to model the desired behaviour.
2. Develop business plans
Business planning should be positive. But it must also must be realistic if a high performance culture is going to exist . Be clear about what can be delivered with the resources available. How will those available resources change over time? Take into account the people management implications. If you invest in training, how will that effect your business plan? Once plans and priorities have been established, they need pervade the organisation. Your plans need to be translated into department, team and individual performance plans. These need to be throughout the organisation. Can you see the the organisation’s objectives reflected in the most junior employee’s performance plan?
3. Establish what good performance looks like and how it can be measured
All performance indicators and other criteria used to measure performance must be clearly communicated. This should be to all staff and contractors supporting the organisation. Think about what really matters. And focus on measuring the essentials. Keep the number of measures to a minimum. Want to know more about performance measures? Follow this link
4. Monitor and evaluate
Systems need to be set up to ensure that performance can be monitored and evaluated throughout the year. You need to understand the effect of changes in levels of performance on the services delivered to your customers or users.
5. Agree specific performance objectives
The organisation’s plans and priorities must be translated into department, team and individual performance objectives. This will usually be by using your existing performance appraisal and staff development processes. Individual plans are most effective when both manager and employee agree them. Objectives should be SMART. That means;
- Time bound.
Is the existing performance management system for your staff up to the job? If not, take some advice and change it. See Paragraph 7 below.
6. Develop an internal communications’ approach
Effective messages should target your intended audience in the whole range of ways available to you. So, develop a plan for how you will use different media to target various communities within the organisation using for example:
- Intranet (inside the organisation)
- Newsletter/house magazine
- Notice board
- Team briefs
- Video and in-house TV (you can even use YouTube.)
In addition, regular surveys and suggestion schemes are important ways of ensuring that employees have the opportunity to tell you what they think. This can be on a wide range of issues that impact on performance.
7. Ensure that performance framework systems are truly in place
A performance review/appraisal system is traditionally used to
- Set objectives,
- Identify support needs and
- Measure progress against objectives.
For it to work effectively, the system must be clearly understood by both managers and employees. This requires:
- Managers have access to guidance. And the training needed to ensure they manage performance effectively throughout the year
- All employees have the necessary support, guidance and training to help them engage fully in the performance appraisal process.
If you don’t have these in place it is unlikely that you can become a high performing organisation
8. Support employees to succeed
Effective induction and probation processes for new employees are extremely important. They set the right expectations of performance for both the employee and the manager. Personal development plans (PDPs) should explain how development needs will be met.
9. Encourage performance improvement
Sometimes performance will not meet the required standard. You will need to identify what is getting in the way. Don’t assume anyone chooses to perform poorly. Put in place a plan to deliver improvement and give support. The principle is the same at both the team and individual level. So you need to have clear procedures for dealing with poor performance.
10. Recognise and reward good performance
Good performance needs to be recognised and rewarded. Recognising performance should include sharing success stories. And share the knowledge gained across the organisation. Highlight how good performance helps the organisation as a whole.
Working with an executive coach really can help you get your organisation to perform well. Why not take advantage of my offer of a free half hour coaching session to find out how I can help
Wendy Smith is a career consultant, life coach and business coach with depth of experience in organizational development, management, coaching and personal development. That experience means she is equally at home helping clients find a new career direction, starting-up new businesses or dealing with life’s more challenging personal issues. You can contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org
Wendy has written a little eBook on how to get on with your boss and a book on job search – you can find her books on Amazon at this link