You have heard of leverage, right? Well, when you properly validate or correct the performance of your employees, you will increase your production leverage enormously. In other words, a small amount of correctly applied validation or correction can produce amazingly large results. And your operation will be far more productive when you get this right.
Correcting Poor Performance
Some people have more horsepower than others when it comes to getting things done and some do it easily while others truly struggle. There could be several reasons for an employee’s poor performance. Firstly, they lack the proper education or training for the job. Secondly, they are very unsuited to the activity in terms of their overall approach. Thirdly, they are criminal in their irresponsibility towards the company and the job. And finally, they have not understood the purpose of the activity or the results that they are supposed to achieve.
You, as their manager or leader, need to figure out which of the above applies to the person you need to correct. Use the straight forward approach; just sit them down and talk to them about their performance.
If it is simply a lack of proper education and training, get them trained. If you can establish that they have done well in previous jobs, then you know they can produce results, so it is worth training them for this job. Being unsuited for the position is actually a comment on the ability of the person who hired the employee for that job, or the person who moved them into it. Suppose the job requires a highly social, outgoing approach, but the employee is very shy and afraid to talk to people. They are totally unsuitable and will never produce the results you require, so move them into another position if you can.
Some people will never be corrected because they are completely irresponsible and they do not show any inclination to correct this. The result is that they will never produce the results you need and they will have a negative impact on those around them.
The last point is probably the most common and it is also the easiest to fix. All you need to do is make sure these employees understand very clearly what results they are supposed to achieve. When they really see what the purpose of the job is and what it is supposed to produce, it becomes much easier for them to improve their game.
Validating Good Performance
The next step is validating the performance of those who produce really good results. Do you give them a pat on the back, increase their pay, give them a financial bonus, or reward them with a dinner for two or a weekend away?
These are some of the traditional ways to reward people and there is nothing wrong with any of them, but first consider this: help them to do their job even better in the future.
When someone produces good results, they get a high degree of satisfaction out of that fact alone. People who produce results will often get their kicks from the production of those results. Therefore, if you can help them to improve production, they will get even more satisfaction, and this is the best reward.
So how do you improve the results of a top performing employee? The answer is to talk to them and find out how they managed to achieve such good results. Ask them what they are doing so right and what is stopping them from doing even more. When you understand this, you will see where they need help. It could be as simple as giving them better technology to utilise, providing them with an assistant who can take some of the administrative load off their shoulders or changing the company procedures to get the barriers out of the way and speed things up. The key principle is to find out what they are doing so well and reinforce those activities so they can do them even better.
When top-performing employees start to produce even more due to the support you are providing them with, they will definitely feel rewarded. Remember; they get their kicks from producing results, so the more they produce, the bigger the kick.
Now, having said all that, there is still nothing wrong with giving them some physical rewards, such as bonuses and pay rises. Just make sure you help them to increase their production first.
Neil Clark has spent 30 years as a manager in both large and small organisations in Australia and South East Asia. He can be contacted via www.performancemanagement-made-easy.com, where more articles of this type can also be viewed.