HOW PERFORMANCE REVIEWS SUPPORT THE NEW MODEL
Recognition and reward programs are generally accepted as valuable support for a company's agenda, but a consensus on performance assessments is not as easily achieved. Most business-people would agree that performance reviews conducted according to the principles of quality management fit neatly into the drive for continuous improvement.
Conditions of quality improvement:
The prevailing opinion among quality experts is that performance appraisals support quality improvement under the following conditions:
- The performance appraisal must be separate from the compensation system. The purpose of a performance appraisal is to improve performance through communication. Dangling pay like a carrot changes the emphasis from improving because it is the right thing to do to improving because it is the profitable thing to do.
- The performance appraisal must be based on observable, measurable behaviors and results. The identification and use of key indicators is a principle of quality management that is just as valuable to an employee who is evaluating his or her performance as it is to an employee who is evaluating the performance of his or her punch press. In both cases, the goal is to improve performance, not to criticize the performer. And in both cases, the employee should help determine what to measure, then collect the data.
- The performance appraisal must include timely feedback. Annual performance revievvs are too infrequent to promote continuous improvement and defect prevention. Feedback should be specific, immediate, and positive, related to performance the employee can control.
- The performance appraisal must encourage employee participation. The manager's role in a performance appraisal is to help the employee understand the assessment, to work with the employee to develop new goals and actions, to explore opportunities for career development, and to encourage the employee to provide feedback on the manager's performance as it relates to the employee.
- This new way of reviewing performance is a natural extension of the principles that quality leaders have embraced.
- Employees are no longer commodities you do things to; they are valued internal customers and supplıers who are responsible for continuous improvement.
- A performance assessment that supports and encourages their contributions be-comes an important' tool for the quality improvement process.