Push, push the needle.
In the US, the Super Bowl is coming into focus. As I live in the Middle East now, cricket is winding down the season. All major sports have a destination point and that is to win their respective championship. Each year, you will notice, for the most part, when it comes down to the wire, the usual suspects are in the running. To them, performance is paramount. If we do not make it, why and what are we going to do about it?
A new curriculum for a critical new breed of Talent Advisors.
However, regardless of the outcome, everyone goes back to the drawing board to review what happened, how it happened and how we can keep it from happening again. The drive for performance is a constant struggle.
How can you get better, how can you execute at a higher level?
In our businesses, we should mirror that same type of activity at the end of our year. How did we do? What do we need to do better, and more importantly, do we have the talent to make it happen? There is the old saying that was attributed to Einstein “doing the same thing over and over again expecting different results” as being the definition of insanity.
There is a common thread to successful companies, in that they consistently push the needle to drive superior performance.
However, this is what businesses do year in and year out: do not reach the targets, march on and continue the struggle with the belief that things will fall into place. Yet, winning sports teams will leave no stone unturned, even shedding talent that has reached its prime.
You are no stronger than the talent you keep
There is a common thread to successful companies, in that they consistently push the needle to drive superior performance. However, superior performance is done by the talent within. You are no stronger than the talent you house within those corporate walls.
This should be the new focus of organisations today, just as sports teams concentrate on their players and their capabilities, the same should be said for the talent within. Because without the talent to carry out the strategy, all you have are ideas on paper.
The aim of managing performance is an ongoing process to continuously improve the performance of individuals and that of the organisation. It involves making sure that the performance of employees contributes to the goals of their team and the business as a whole. In other words, winning the championship of your business vertical or whatever measure you will gauge success by.
When performance management is paramount and instilled within, it helps if everyone knows some of the following:
- What the business is trying to achieve;
- How does their role play into helping the business achieve its goals;
- What are the skills and competencies they need to fulfil their role;
- Determining the standards of performance that would be required;
- Enabling the leaders to determine how they can develop their performance and contribute to the development of the organisation; and
- Guiding employees within the framework as to how they are doing.
This performance mandate gives everyone a clear picture of what the organisation is striving for.
In sports, it is crystal clear that the championship is the Holy Grail. That is why it is important that leaders make sure their goals are clear, from the mailroom to the boardroom. It is extremely important that all of your employees have a clear line of sight to the target.
That is why it is important that leaders make sure their goals are clear, from the mailroom to the boardroom. It is extremely important that all of your employees have a clear line of sight to the target.
This can be done in numerous ways, but more importantly, everyone should be in on it. If you are a public traded company, you have to prepare for your earnings call every quarter. The same amount of rigour that is used to prepare for this call should also be scaled across to the employee base.
Even if you’re not publicly traded, there should be a sit-down to explain where you are and what you need to do to get better every quarter. By concentrating just on this level of performance, it affords the opportunity to make adjustments, and more importantly, to have all the talent aware of where the organisation is and what the struggles are.
You may be surprised as to how this releases the innovation and impetus needed to make that elusive target. If they, being the talent, do not know, you are flying rudderless.