The scorecards can be accessed by anyone in the company, a crucial facet of a complete open-book management style. Although open-book management is not necessary for job performance measures to be fully effective, the data must come directly from the field. Opening the books can ensure that the supplied data is valid because employees can spot check one another. In addition, showing employees where the company stands gives them a stake in the outcome and helps them understand how their individual actions shape the entire unit.
It may take up to one year for the metrics to transition fully into the company. It’s crucial for you to look at this as an ongoing process. Measures can change, become irrelevant or simply fail to give the information sought, especially in the face of growth or a shift in goals.
Measuring Performance by Employee
Owners and managers need to analyze weekly job performance on all levels—and then make relevant notes in each individual’s performance file. The fallout will almost be immediate.
Some employees will not do well with the changes; especially those who’ve been with the company for a long time. But the rest of the crew that embraces the new system will prove to be very valuable and productive. They feel like you’re investing time in them. They will step up.
Investing in employees is imperative to helping them adjust to the job performance microscope. It is sometimes necessary to hold bimonthly half-day workshops led by an outside consultant, covering topics such as embracing change, synergy team building and conflict resolution in order to put your staff at ease.
You need to focus more on non-monetary perks, such as giving MVP awards and recognizing each employee’s important life events. This can be done at your weekly or monthly staff meeting. Coupled with these things, the increased frequency of performance reviews has taken away the trepidation associated with the process, making them ideal times to talk about the work rather than just raises.
In addition, good-natured peer pressure has helped reinforce the team atmosphere. Mentoring, which is pairing a high performer with someone who might be lagging, is a great way to increase productivity.
Act on the Results
You should review departmental metric summary reports, provided to you by each department manager, on a weekly basis. Then, about every three months, you should re-evaluate each of the metrics and potentially redefine some of them based on the data you’re analyzing. Be sure to set aside time to do this.
Likewise, be sure to share the information with your crews. Many business owners struggle with the notion of giving financial information to employees. Would they understand it? Would they believe the information or think that no matter what the boss says, he’s really getting more money than he’s admitting? Regardless, if you don’t give employees information to understand what the metrics mean, it’s hard to hold them accountable. Plus, it’s detrimental to job performance. So you may need to remove yourself from daily functions of the business, open your books and close your mouth.
If you trust your employees to walk onto someone’s home or business property unsupervised, you should be able to show them basic mathematics and tell them this is how their job performance is rated. The fear of doing so could hold your company back for years. To your surprise, you will find that there are people who actually want to meet those goals, and the workers will start sharing helpful information with management.
You cannot hold employees to a higher level of accountability and then fail to follow through on honoring their needs or negate their influence when they expect changes to be made. On the other hand, be ready to act when an employee fails to meet goals. There has to be a system in place to deal with underperformers. In companies I have been involved with, employees were given two warnings, one written and one verbal, and an offer to undergo training to help them improve their scores. Termination is not the immediate option, but the workers understand that if they don’t continually meet the goals, they will be looking for another job.