Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Performance Management Continuum with Three Shifts

Performance Management should be sustained and monitored at constant intervals to ensure robustness. 

Performance Management is a complex management discipline out there with so many variables that determine performance - including inter-dependencies within teams or organizations. It is not a bunch of paperwork, but a combination of management approaches leading to constantly improving business results.

Digital performance management should make important shifts, take a multidimensional approach, connect all-important dots with multifaceted perspectives, and drive an iterative business continuum.

From silo to holistic: Traditional management disciplines usually apply Newtonian reductionist philosophy to run hierarchical business, assuming business performance is the sum of its pieces. They fail to look into the system holistically. To avoid silo thinking, individual goals typically are goals that are based on a subsection of a department's goals, and the division goals are always the coherent part of the company’s goal. Managing business performance requires a system with component parts that all work together to ensure the overall business performance is superior to the sum of pieces.

The digital organization is hyper-connected and interdependent, business managers need to shift their mindset from developing performance management processes or implementation to developing holistic performance management solutions. The digital mind behind “the hyper performance magic” is holism, encouragement, empathy, appreciation, or people-centricity, etc. Performance management needs to be transparent and objective, understood by the entire organization. It should promote teamwork, rather than for micro-management: The basic fact is that the Performance Management System (PMS) is a working tool that improves performance/ productivity within an organization. The holistic performance management approach means to well align the strategic level of measures with operational level metrics and manage business performance as an iterative management continuum.

From static to dynamic: Traditional performance management in the Industrial Age is often based on more static processes or linear steps to measure defined goals and objectives. There is a danger of not having a dynamic process to "develop and nurture" performance. But running a high-performance digital business means leveraging information to analyze and predict, and having the organizational adaptability to evolve emerging events or disruptive changes, setting metrics, adjusting plans, measuring performance and understanding results dynamically.

Business executives are eager to set stages for implementing strategies and driving continuous performance management. The performance management alignment should be a smooth and harmonized process, approach a flow zone in which people are ready for moving to a fluid working environment, and improving business achievement as an iterative continuum.

From “past focused” to “future-driven”: Most organizations fail to manage performance effectively because they only focus on assessing past performance, improving processes or implementations of performance management or evaluation. A robust performance management system needs to be designed with end-users in mind, more future-oriented, output-driven, not process-driven, etc. It’s important to manage an ongoing Performance Management in a positive manner to focus on optimizing future performance and keep the end - business goals in mind as always.

The future of the organization is fluid, flexible, informative and autonomous. Digital companies advocate self-management. Performance Management should be sustained and monitored at constant intervals to ensure robustness. It should strongly encourage employees to self-evaluate performance, encourage autonomy, discovery, and continuous improvement. Performance management is no longer just the static tool for assessing the past performance of employees, it can be used as a means to develop the digital-ready workforce. Move the purpose of performance reviews and management away from evaluating the past, and focus on improving success in the future.

Reimagining the future of business is exciting, but investigating the different paths for unlocking business performance and potential needs to take a holistic, dynamic and systematic approach and develop it into a more solid form. Continuous performance management is necessary in an ever-changing world, in order to run a future-driven digital organization.


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