Join Todd Dewett for an in-depth discussion in this video Partnering for short-term and long-term success, part of Performance Review Foundations.
In decades past, it was not uncommon to execute the goal setting process in a very simple top-down manner. People above you in the hierarchy simply dictated goals to you. Certainly there were benefits to this approach, such as great clarity about lines of authority and good efficiency. However, over time, a better approach has emerged. In most organizations, slowly but surely over the last 30 years, there's been a shift away from dictating goals and towards partnering and collaborating to create goals across levels of the organization.
This shift is being driven by several factors. The first is a rising respect for the average employee. In general, the world of business has begun to realize, thanks to common sense and good research, that the companies who truly value their employees the most, typically win in the marketplace. The second factor is an emerging sense of equality within leadership structures. Certainly, people are still aware of status differences. Nonetheless, there's an increasing sense of we or team that defines top performing leadership teams.
Over time, we've realized that we truly do win or lose together as a team. Finally, we've learned through research that partnering and collaborating creates unique mental benefits that far outweigh the efficiency of simple dictation. When an employee or manager collaborates with their superior, as opposed to merely receiving instructions, they feel higher purpose, stronger ownership over their duties. And they experience higher resolve to reach their goals. In the end, this type of two-way dialogue helps ensure that you not only meet the company's needs, but also the employee's needs.
This type of partnering mentality is needed because today, your job is about engaging your team in a more holistic way. I want you to think about short term productivity and long term commitment. Interestingly, we often get lost thinking about short term goals and forget the real purpose of our work. We all know about the classic approach to goal setting using SMART goals. For goals to work, they have to be specific, measurable, aligned, reachable, and time-bound.
If you'd like to hear more about SMART goals, please check out two of my other courses here on lynda.com that address SMART goals from a couple different perspectives, Motivating and Engaging Employees, and New Manager Fundamentals. SMART goals are important, but you want to give your employees more than short-term productivity. They need long-term commitment. You have to move past SMART goals and spend time reminding your team about the long term downstream outcomes they support. What are the team, organizational, and customer-related achievements your team supports? Using genuine comments, hand-written notes, relevant video, or any other medium you can think of.
Find creative ways to remind them of the big picture they help create. For example, if your team purchases raw materials that are fed into a manufacturing process, well, a few times each year, you should gather them around a few of the products, and show them exactly where those purchases went. So they can literally see their contribution. If your team processes loan applications for a bank, they need to know about the actual people they've helped. Showing them pictures of a few first time home owners they've supported might work wonders.
Figure out who your team ultimately serves and creatively connect them to these outcomes. That's what builds the needed perspective to make SMART goals really work in the short term. In many ways, leadership has become far more enlightened in recent years. We no longer view employees as faceless assets. They're partners and collaborators. We can build and maintain that mentality by giving them great direction through dialogue. You'll definitely want to use quality SMART goals, but don't forget to address purpose.
When you show them the good things they ultimately support, that's when purpose becomes passion.
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The information contained in the following course is provided with the viewer's understanding that the course should not be used as a substitute for consulting a human resource professional at your company for specific guidance. Lynda.com and LinkedIn expressly disclaim liability for any damages, loss, or risk, incurred as a direct or indirect consequence, from the use and application of any content herein.
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- Understanding the performance cycle
- Setting performance goals
- Collecting performance data and feedback
- Writing the review
- Discussing performance with an employee
- Using a performance improvement plan (PIP)<br><br>
- The PMI Registered Education Provider logo is a registered mark of the Project Management Institute, Inc.