I often talk to business owners who complain that their employees and supervisors did not meet performance expectations, that they missed the bar. I often suggest that maybe they didn’t know where the bar was in the first place.
The process of pushing the bar
The process of improving performance accountability has three steps.
- The first step
The first step is the most important, but it is also the one businesses fail at the most. You have to let employees know in advance what the performance goals are and what they need to do to accomplish those goals. If you don’t provide clear direction on how to accomplish a goal, you assume the risk that employees will work hard on projects that don’t help you where you need the help.
- The second step
The second step in improving accountability is to provide metrics. One of my favorite quotes is, “You can’t manage what you can’t measure.” If you keep track of your goals and make progress toward achieving them – especially if you can define particular tasks that support the progress – everyone in your company can shift resources to fill in the gaps. Measuring progress also helps you fix situations during the times when you might not meet your goals. The shortfall is clearly defined or diagnosed.
- The third step
The third step is extremely important yet simple – do nothing. By this, I mean do not micromanage after delegating the work. Have you clearly laid out the goals and how to achieve them? Do you have a measurement system in place? Then, you must trust your employees and supervisors to do their work. After all, that is the reason you hired them in the first place. Too much management and feedback can backfire and stifle creativity.
By following the three steps discussed above, you and your employees will be on the same page in regards to goals and expectations. You have taught them how to score, given them the ball, and it is now in their court.
Sales and Sales Training Specialist Frank Bastone can be reached at 718 662 8581, or schedule time for a chat here.