Planning to perform; turning underperformance around
When we think about performance management, we usually focus on identifying underperformance and how to broach it with the employee concerned.
These are undoubtedly important parts of the process – but we also need to think about what to do next. Once you've spoken to the employee about their performance you may want to work with them to develop a performance improvement plan.
A performance improvement plan maps out what the employee needs to achieve to be performing at the required standard and what steps they should take to get there. Of course, the most successful performance improvement plans are developed by working closely with the employee – it'll help to get their buy-in and make sure the goals are clear.
There are a couple of key elements that should be included in a performance improvement plan:
• Identify the performance expectations – What is the required standard of the role? What does success look like in this position?
• Identify the performance indicators – How do you measure success in this role? How do you know the required outcomes have been achieved?
• Agree on a strategy – How will the employee reach the required standard? What tasks will they need to complete to demonstrate that their performance has improved?
• Set a timeframe – When will you review the employee's performance improvement? What milestones will help them keep on track?
A performance improvement plan is a great start, but it won't fix the problem without effort from both the employee and their manager. Work closely with the employee to monitor their progress and offer support. Check in regularly between formal reviews to make sure they're on track.
iHR Australia offers performance management training to help you get the best from your workers and foster a high performance culture. Our public Managing Everyday Performance courses are delivered across the country or we can come to your site and tailor a program to suit your needs. Learn more.