It is not the buildings or the products and services you offer that make your organization successful; more than anything else, it is your most important assets – your employees – who make your organization successful. The performance of the organization is the collective of all the individual performances of the employees, and if these individual performances are out of whack, then the collective goes for a toss too. It is important that organizations recognize their employees’ performance and take steps to optimize it so that the entire organizational performance is at its peak. Here are some tips on improving employee performance:
Measure Often and Effectively
The first step in improving employee performance is to recognize it. This happens through measurement, often and effectively. Yes, you do have your annual appraisals, but measuring employee performance just once a year will not do you much good. A lot can happen in the course of a year, and employees might have to work on multiple projects and tasks, and looking at this only once a year is neither very useful nor very effective and is often cumbersome and time-consuming. Therefore, organizations must come out of this mentality of annual appraisals, and measure employee performance more often. There should be a set policy of performance measurement periodically, as often as monthly, and if they cannot afford it, at least quarterly.
Square Objectives, Round Performances
This is one of the most common reasons organizations around the world suffer from poor employee performance. Often, organizational objectives are not conveyed to the people who actually have to work towards them. Employees might be doing their best in their job roles and responsibilities, but if it is not contributing towards the objectives of the organization, then it is of no use to anyone. Therefore, all the employees must be completely aware of the company objectives and what they need to do in order to achieve them.
Effective communication is often the antidote to all sorts of problems an organization encounters. More than many of the other components, good, effective communication can solve a lot of problems. Employees need to be communicated to, efficiently and effectively, and told what is expected out of them. Lack of communication leads to many issues, including under-par performance and reduced productivity.
Motivation plays a key role in the performance of an employee. When employees are motivated to give their best, they often perform better, and if they are demotivated or are given no reason to be motivated, it comes through in the way they perform. Therefore, it is essential for organizations to provide their employees with all the motivation they need to pick themselves up and put up their best performances. From offering challenging tasks to being consistent and transparent in their policies, there is a lot organizations can do to motivate their employees.
You might have more than ten thousand employees in your organization, but at the end of the day, each employee is an individual, and each individual’s performance matters. The chain is only as strongest as the weakest link, and if you don’t give any attention to this weak link, it can break the whole chain. Therefore, implement a policy of giving adequate attention too each individual so that they improve themselves and contribute towards the success of the whole organization.
Measuring employee performance periodically is of no great use of effective feedback is not given to them to improve themselves. Feedback from seniors and managers will play a huge role in performance improvement of the employee, and organizations should institute a policy where feedback about performance is given periodically. This should be available to all the stakeholders so that they will know how things are going with the employees.
Rewards and Incentives
Offering rewards and incentives will play an important role in directing employees towards improving their performances. If an employee knows that performing a task effectively will result in a promotion or increment, he or she will try to do just that. Also, rewards and incentives act as carrots for employees to perform better. However, you need to be careful in deciding your rewards and incentives, and the way you pick employees for them. If the system is not transparent, or if there is preferential treatment being meted out to certain employees, others will slack as they know that their performance is not going to make a difference for them.
Lastly, one of the most important, often-ignored, factors that affect employee performance is the workplace culture. When the workplace culture is one that is vibrant and rewards good performances, employees naturally feel like doing their best. But if the culture is lax or slack, employees soon fall into the same routine, and do not work on their performance.
All in all, employee performance is a very important factor in the overall success of the organization, and therefore has to be given its rightful importance.