Posted on May 29, 2014

Great Performance Management: Avoiding the 7 Interaction Sins

Only 35 percent of employees identified by their companies as highly talented say they feel the company tells them openly and candidly where they stand. That’s a sign that *leaders across the board are challenged by effective performance management*—and it could be costing their organizations.

Between 80-90 percent of employees say they’ve left jobs for reasons related to their manager or their job, not their compensation. Considering the turnover cost of even one employee can be upward of $20,000, businesses are facing something of a management crisis.

How can managers lead their teams more effectively? A vital part of performance management is focusing on critical interactions and making them truly matter by setting and keeping appointments, communicating and re-communicating expectations and avoiding the seven interaction sins.

The 7 deadly interaction sins

Here are seven things not to do when managing direct reports and leading other associates:

1. Go straight to fixing the problem

Before solving an issue, a leader must be sure to understand it fully. The temptation is to get things done as quickly as possible, which isn’t always the most effective approach.

2. Assume one size fits all

Different situations and different individuals call for different styles of conversation and behavior. Break out of the way you normally think or act to ensure you’re meeting the needs of the circumstances at hand.

3. Avoid tough issues

No one likes confrontation, but failing to tackle problem areas head-on can create lasting results more detrimental than the initial issue itself.

4. Apply skills inconsistently across different contexts

Leaders have been found to act differently when they’re negotiating with peers vs. reports vs. superiors. Your strongest skills, however, shouldn’t be saved for one set of stakeholders! Consistency helps build trust.

5. Influence through facts only

Many leaders tend to rely solely on logic, failing to understand others’ perspectives and overlooking the impact emotion and empathy can make on a situation.

6. Spot opportunities for change but forget to engage others

Most leaders can see the need or the chance for change. The trick is being proactive, empowering others to develop ideas and then showing appreciation for the impact of the change.

7. Neglect to coach in the moment

Any interaction potentially is an opportunity for coaching, clarifying requirements and offering support. Don’t miss the chance by being too busy or too focused on crossing off items from a checklist.

The bottom line

Effective performance management and overall leadership is an art form, developed over time through hard work and focus—just like any other skill. With so many tasks on your plate, why worry about the “soft” side of your job? Simply put: good management leads to improved employee engagement, which in turn leads to bottom-line business success.

Companies with high engagement have:
* 12 percent higher customer metrics
* 18 percent higher productivity
* 16 percent higher profitability
* 37 percent lower absenteeism

To learn more, download this free whitepaper, Employee Engagement: Why You Can’t Afford to Get It Wrong.

Performance reviews provide a crucial interaction between associate and manager. Paycor’s HRIS provides a user-friendly interface for employees and supervisors to manage reviews, access employee files and foster open communication. Learn more by speaking with a Paycor representative.