As a manager, a primary responsibility is to ensure that every team member meets their set standards. Providing optimal tools and guidance is crucial to facilitate the team in achieving their goals. Nonetheless, there are unfortunate situations where an employee struggles to meet targets, resulting in performance below expectations. In such instances, it becomes necessary for a manager to initiate a Performance Improvement Process. The primary objective is to assist employees in meeting job requirements by implementing a structured and supportive improvement plan.
Here are some tips to ensure success of the Performance Improvement Process
A Performance Improvement Plan (PIP) should be approached with sincerity and a genuine commitment to helping an employee succeed, rather than being viewed merely as a necessary step towards employee termination. It should foster development. PIP is a supportive tool indicating that the organization is invested in the employee’s success. This approach encourages the employee to view the process positively and as a chance for growth.
Prepare a Realistic Development Plan
Ensure that the goals set in the PIP are realistic and achievable. Unrealistic expectations can be demotivating and counterproductive, leading to a self–fulfilling prophecy of failure. Make sure the goals are S.M.A.R.T – Specific, Measurable Achievable, Relevant and Time Bound.
Maintain Open Communication
It is advisable to have a face–to–face communication than emails are its avoid misinterpretation and any concerns can be addressed with employee left to speculate. Maintain open and transparent communication throughout the PIP. Clearly articulate the reasons for the plan, the expected improvements, and the support available. Encourage the employee to share their perspective and challenges.
Provide Constructive Feedback
Best away to provide constructive feedback is using the Sandwich technique also known as positive–negative–positive approach. Begin the feedback session on a positive note. Highlight specific strengths, achievements, or positive attributes of the individual. This sets a constructive and encouraging tone for the conversation. After delivering the positive feedback, introduce the areas for improvement or constructive criticism. Be specific about behaviors or actions that need adjustment and offer suggestions for improvement. Finally conclude the feedback session by reiterating positive aspects and expressing confidence in the individual’s ability to make improvements.
Reiterate the Availability of EAP Services
The PIP process can be stressful for employees, leading to anxiety and feelings of inadequacy. An EAP serves as an additional layer of support, offering counselling, guidance, and resources to help employees cope with the emotional aspects of performance improvement. Incorporating an EAP into the PIP demonstrates a commitment to employee well–being and provides a valuable resource to help individuals overcome personal challenges while working towards performance improvement.
Exit as a Last Resort
Consider termination as a last resort. If, despite sincere efforts, the employee is unable to meet expectations, then decisions about their future with the organization can be made. However, genuine efforts should be made to avoid premature exits.
We are here to help and support you if you need support in conducting a Performance Improvement Plan with positive outcome for the employee and business. Please feel free to contact us on email@example.com or call us on 1300 474 672.