Right from the start: Performance goals for your employees
Performance goals are expectations related to an employee’s duties and responsibilities. To improve the contributions of your staff to organizational goals, it is important for them to have targets. Your performance goals need follow the SMART method to be specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and time-bound.
You can set a variety of performance goals for employees. In a manufacturing setting, goals can be production quotas per month or per quarter. Salespeople can also have performance goals related to customer acquisition and revenue generation. You can give customer service agents the goal of reducing customer complaints by a certain percentage.
To ensure your employees can contribute meaningfully to the company’s success, here are techniques to improve their performance:
- Set clear goals
- Invest in employee development
- Perform regular employee evaluations
- Individualize employee motivation
- Ask for feedback
- Reward improvement
Set clear goals
To keep employees at their best, it is necessary to communicate your expectations in clear language. Employees need to understand their work assignments, duties, responsibilities and result and how to achieve them. Provide consistent feedback to help them make sense of their objectives.
Invest in employee development
Employees need to update their skills and knowledge continuously to contribute effectively to the organization. Rather than simply setting performance goals, empower employees by investing in their development to help them achieve career objectives while moving the company closer to its goals.
Perform regular employee evaluations
To improve employee performance, you need to appraise them regularly. Regular performance evaluations will show your staff what they need to do to meet their goals. This can encourage employees to dedicate themselves to achieving personal and organizational objectives.
Individualize employee motivation
Employees have diverse personalities that require different styles of leadership and motivation. Try to understand your employees and the best way to approach each individual to improve their performance. By knowing your employees’ individual strengths and weaknesses, you can help them attain better outcomes by placing them in positions where they can maximize their talents and experiences.
Ask for feedback
Many of the issues making your employees underperform may be out of their control. This makes it vital to always ask for their feedback and suggestions on how to improve working conditions and increase productivity. Listening to employees’ concerns can help management identify easier ways of solving problems, improve workplace relationship and boost the achievement of organizational goals.
Another way to boost performance is to reward employees who achieve their goals. Rewards can take the form of gifts, bonuses, verbal praise and promotions. The point is to demonstrate your appreciation of their commitment to the organization.
Related: Performance Improvement Plan
How to measure the right thing
Measuring employee performance requires knowing the right metrics to track. Here are examples of the most important points to consider when assessing employee performance:
- Work execution: One of the best ways to measure employee performance is to evaluate their level of execution. You want to measure their ability to prioritize, delegate and manage time effectively to get things done.
- Work quality: The quality of work is another crucial indicator of employee performance. It is important for teams to deliver products and services that meet the requirements and specifications of the company and end-users. If there are lapses in production or delivery timelines, performance evaluation can help identify problems and provide solutions.
- Punctuality: Late coming and absenteeism are signs of an underperforming employee. High-achieving employees know how to manage their resources to deliver projects on time and on budget. If an employee has difficulty keeping to time, it is best to find out whether the issues are work-related or personal and look for ways to help the person achieve peak performance.
- Attitude: The attitude of an employee can be a strong indicator of their performance level. People with a positive attitude often find it easy to collaborate, communicate, accept feedback and criticism and learn on the job. These qualities improve their ability to deliver higher results. However, employees who can’t follow rules, disrespect colleagues and display insubordinate behavior may find it difficult to meet their work objectives.
- Personal habits: Personal habits can affect employee performance positively and negatively. Employees who engage in unacceptable behavior and use company property for non-work-related activities such as social media may be incapable of delivering on their goals. This makes it vital to have a behavioral code that will guide employee conduct to maintain order and improve performance in the workplace.
- Creativity: Creativity is another important performance metric. This can involve discovering new ways of performing duties or learning new skills. You can encourage employees to practice critical thinking to improve their ability to come up with novel ideas for solving the company’s problems.
- Sales revenue: The number of sales an employee generates is a key indicator of their performance. An employee who consistently meets sales and revenue quotas can move the company towards its goals. Such high-achieving people can teach others how to achieve better results for improved performance.
- Customer and peer feedback: Employees who receive positive feedback from customers and colleagues will likely have good performance records. The opposite is often true if customers and peers always complain about the conduct of an employee.
Read more: How to Conduct an Employee Evaluation
Employee performance FAQs
Are employee performance reviews mandatory?
Employee performance reviews are not mandatory. However, they allow you to identify gaps in employees’ skills and capabilities. This can help the company to design improvement strategies to address issues and improve employees’ productivity and efficiency.
What is performance evaluation form?
A performance evaluation form is used to assess the workplace performance of employees. The document rates employees’ general quality of work, job knowledge, management ability, achievement of goals, personality and other criteria.
What is a performance evaluation system?
A performance evaluation system is used to assess employees’ performance and develop their skills and capabilities to improve workplace contribution.