What is performance management?

Performance management is an analysis of the performance of employees by constant communication between employee and supervisor or management. This whole cycle includes identifying and setting goals, discussing expectations, giving continuous feedback, and then reviewing outcomes. Performance management is a continuous process not once a month or year task.

Phases of the performance management cycle

There was a time in corporate history when the performance management cycle used to be of 12 months but now it’s an ongoing and fluid process. While the performance management cycle is of many types but most common is one cited by Michael Armstrong in his handbook of performance management. This cycle has four phases.

Planning( setting goals and objectives),

Action(employees act on their goals while managers guide them),

Tracking (Managers coach employees and track their progress),

Review (Final assessment of the performance of employee round the year). Usually, organizations put a large emphasis on the last stage, ‘review’, This stage is mostly known as an annual performance review. A final meeting at the end of the year, this traditional approach of one a year meetings can be very frustrating and unproductive. This one a year meeting makes it unfeasible so reviewing more frequently makes it more productive and agile & hence this is used by most companies nowadays.

Benefits of the continuous evaluation approach

  • By this short term goals becomes more relevant. Short term goals should be the primary focus of every organization, as this favors change, which happens sometimes, which results in a change in goals, strategy, and planning.
  • Short term goals tend to be achieved quickly. As they say ‘once you start seeing results, it becomes addiction’. This helps in keeping employee motivation high.
  • It allows management and employees to discuss progress and expectations with continuous inputs along the journey. This allows employers to recognize and acknowledge, outstanding performances and areas with the scope of improvement.

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