Performance Management - Free eBook in PDF Format

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Performance Management eBook  

Book Description - ISBN 978-1-62620-990-9 (31 Pages)
This free eBook will provide you with a firm understanding of the principles behind performance management as well as practical advice for completing each stage of the appraisal process.

Chapter 1 - Performance Management Cycle
Even if your organization provides a manual describing the appraisal process it is unlikely to explain fundamental principles behind performance management. This often leaves managers feeling they have little support and guidance in this crucial area.

Chapter 2 - OSCAR Principles of Performance Management
As a manager there are certain things you can do within the appraisal process to help you maximize engagement and encourage your team to attain high levels of performance. You can use the mnemonic OSCAR to help you to remember these behaviors and incorporate them into the appraisal process.

Chapter 3 - Setting SMART Goals and Objectives
SMART goals are ones that are Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time bound. Once set, the goals must then be monitored and feedback given to the individual to ensure that the goals are attained.

Chapter 4 - Matching Competencies to Roles
As part of your information gathering, you need to include and note your observations of the competencies an individual displays. 'Competencies' can be defined as the way in which a team member works towards their objectives. Does the member's behavior match the responsibilities of their role?

Chapter 5 - Performance Appraisal Role Description
An essential part of being able to measure performance is being able to compare what has actually occurred with a predetermined standard. The standard you need to compare against will be set out in each individual's job description.

Chapter 6 - Appraisal Process Steps
Assessing performance is a continuous cycle comprising several discrete steps. The adoption of the OSCAR performance management principles described earlier will enable you to work through this process in an efficient and structured way. It will also ensure that the expectations you have of your team members match the expectations that each individual has of themselves.

Chapter 7 - Stages of the Appraisal Process
You may need to adapt the stages somewhat to suit the culture and ethos of your organization. This process is continuous and you can join it at any stage, which you may need to do if you take on a new role or join another organization. You may join halfway through an appraisal cycle or you may take on a team that has never had a formal appraisal before.

You will learn how to:
  • Incorporate the four drivers of employee engagement that are needed to support a successful performance management system.
  • Use the OSCAR principles to help you maximize commitment and encourage your team to achieve goals and develop their competencies.
  • Be totally objective and avoid the eight most common causes of bias when making judgments about individual performance.
  • Develop a holistic performance management that can bring you significant productivity gains with a modest investment in time.
  • Collect the data you need for productive, stress-free and motivational appraisal meetings.

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This Book Has Really Helped Me Understand Performance Management
One of the most important aspects of an appraisal is measuring performance. If an employer or manager is unable to compare an employee's management to previous benchmarks, it is very difficult for him or her to evaluate whether the individual has progressed or regressed. Beyond that, an appraisal meeting has to play an important role in motivating employees so they can perform better next quarter and the one after that. Most managers often assume that this meeting provides them a chance to vent out their frustration and tell employees what they can do better. However, this is completely the wrong approach to this important process.

Free Management Ebooks has an informative book by the name of Principles of Performance Management. This book takes a holistic and comprehensive approach to performance management and what steps should be involved in the process. Besides the points mentioned above which I learned from this book, I really stuck to the OSCAR principle mentioned in it.

OSCAR is an acronym that stands for Objective and fair at all times, Smart goals that develop potential, Competencies that match the role's responsibilities, Assess person based on role requirements, and Review based on role's contribution to company. These points are not only easy to remember, but they helped put a lot of matters into perspective for me. I learned that I cannot judge an employee's performance based on his or her last few months at the company. Instead, I have to look at the whole year when evaluating them. It often happens that an employee makes mistakes right before their performance appraisal, and managers are quick to criticize them.

If an employee is an overall consistent performer, he or she should be excused for the odd mistake. This will help them build more trust and credibility in you as a manager, and the organization as a whole.

Another vital aspect I picked up from this book is that not all tasks are designed for just any employee. There are some employees who have specific skill sets that can allow them to complete certain tasks better than others. It is the manager's job to identify those skills, and then utilize them to the company's best interest. So for example, if you know you have a person in your team who is not good with numbers, you wouldn't ask them to forecast next year's sales figures obviously. Similarly, if an individual in your team is not able to usually think out of the box and sticks to traditional methods, you may not want them to take care of advertising your product.

So this book has really helped me understand the dynamics of performance management, and more importantly my team. I appreciate the help these guys have offered and will take the time to read the other books they have on this website.
Tony Kim

A Fantastic Book
As this book states in the beginning, it will teach you how to: incorporate the four drivers of employee engagement that are needed to support a successful performance management system, use the OSCAR principles to help you maximize commitment and encourage your team to achieve goals and develop their competencies, be totally objective and avoid the eight most common causes of bias when making judgments about individual performance, develop a holistic performance management that can bring you significant productivity gains with a modest investment in time, and collect the data you need for productive, stress-free and motivational appraisal meetings.

The author of this book did a great job of completely breaking down each point of the book so that even a beginner will be able to achieve success. Prior to this book, I had never seen the function of performance management defined at all. It was important to have it clearly laid out with the two main function established. The next part of the book moves on to the OSCAR principals. The OSCAR principals are O- objective and fair at all times, S- SMART goals that develop person's potential, C- competencies that match the roles responsibilities, A- access person based on the role requirements, R- review based on role's contribution to organization. I thought this was the most useful part of the entire book. I liked that the author used an acronym to help me to remember the steps. I thought that this part was easily laid out for everyone, even the inexperienced, to understand.

As much as I thought the whole book was extremely informative, the section containing OSCAR was the section that I spent most of my time. I recommend that everyone reading this book pay special attention to this section too. The book then goes on to spend specific time on each principal, explaining in depth each of the five principals. For instance, when the book describes the first principal, to be objective, it goes as far as to list the eight causes people are bias. This is a section that everyone, not just leaders interested in performance management, need to read. This is extremely useful to everyone in a leadership position. I believe that understanding these causes can help you become a better leader. The causes for bias are: similar to me, positive leniency, negative bias, attribution basis, central tendency, saint or sinner, stereotyping, recency effect, and contrast effect.

Some of those terms I had never heard of such as recency effect and central tendency. Similar to me bias is rating someone higher based on having common ground with them or sharing the same ideas. Positive leniency is a way or motivating someone by giving them a better score than they truly earned. Negative bias is not giving someone a higher score which they earned. Attribution basis is scoring an individual bases off of factors they can control and factors they cannot control. This idea was a little tricky to me and I feel that the author should have spent more time defining this and giving more examples. Central tendency is when you give team members scores ranging in the middle instead of highs and lows. Sometimes this happens because of insufficient information.

Saint or Sinner is a giving someone a score based off of one factor, whether it is a positive or negative factor, but not by their overall performance. Stereotyping, to me, is pretty common sense. Stereotyping is judging someone based off of factors such as gender or race. Recency effect is scoring someone based off of something that happened recently. Contrast effect is scoring someone a certain way based off trying to balance out the appraisal scores. If you have given several poor scores then now you feel you must give several good reviews, even though the person may not have earned that score. This book then takes you through the stages of the appraisal meeting, which is a great review or introduction into the appraisal meeting. Stage 1 is conducting the appraisal meeting. During this stage you must make sure that you have open communication with everyone in the meeting.

Stage 2 is defining and agreeing on SMART goals. The e-book then covers SMART goals. I think that everyone needs to be informed of SMART goals so that they can actually achieve the goals that are set for themselves and their team. Stage 3 is describing role competencies. By doing this, it allows everyone to be on the same page.

Stage 4 is person agrees and commits to goals. This is important because it lets you know that your employee actually intends on making his or her goal. Stage 5 is agree and conduct review sessions. This is the time where you decide how often there will be review meetings. Stage 6 is gather performance data which is important because this is what you will use to back up your rating for the individuals performance. Stage 7 is writing your performance summary for person. I feel that this is pretty self-explanatory. The last stage is stage 8 which is getting the persons feedback on your summary. By getting their feedback you will be able to see what you agree on, or what needs to be further discussed. Having an open line of communication is going to be key when building a good working relationship between coworkers.

The section "Assess performance against role description" I feel is important because you have to know what the role description is to evaluate if the person has done their job. Overall, I thought this book is fantastic for everyone to read. It covers everything you need to know to better your performance management skills. This is a must read for all management members. It also covers the basics of an appraisal meeting.
Dean Harper


Keeping Track of Your Team's Competencies - Deciding what competencies each individual needs to develop is relatively easy and often forms part of the annual appraisal process. But being able to keep track of how each person's development is progressing is entirely different and often seems impossible to achieve with everything else you need to get done.

Team Performance Evaluation - To retain and keep your team satisfied you need to look at 'how able' you are as their manager to address their top 5 reasons. You may not be able to keep the same people forever… but focusing your energy into three meaningful areas you will minimize the 'churn factor' within your team, department or division.

How to Overcome a Blame Culture - Quickly and effectively getting rid of a blame culture is one of the best things that a manager can do in order to keep a staff on track and productive. No one gains when the members of an organization are find fault in each other instead of working hard toward a common goal. It is the job of the manager to steer the ship in the right direction, and the above tips are a good start toward that end.

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