In recent years, we have seen some organizations rush to re-create their NEW Performance Management System (PMS) or something similar, straight off the Harvard Business Review press that discusses the negatives of old school performance management systems. In doing so however, you need to tread carefully.

Don’t throw out the baby with the bath water!

old vs new

To use a phrase from many years ago – “you don’t want to throw the baby out with the bath water”, which is an expression used to suggest an avoidable error in which something good is eliminated when trying to get rid of something bad.

We know that a major force driving the change in performance management is the shift to make employee engagement a competitive sustainable business advantage. Which, we agree with.

Recently, companies like Adobe, Juniper, Microsoft, Accenture, Cargile and GE have all undergone a review and in most cases made major redesign changes to their performance management systems.

“Managers today do not want a complicated, electronic process that requires hours of administration and forms one must complete based on looking into the rear-view mirror of what were someone’s goals or objectives at the start of the year” – says Lisa Taillefer, Director Human Resources – Mars Canada.

How do the old and new approaches compare?

Ratings within the Performance Management systems can result in confusion and are counter to our culture. This does not mean that we do not provide feedback, but we do it in a way that aligns people to achieve the goals and desired results.” – Kevin Russell, President, LV Lomas.

Our four (4) predictions on the future trends for performance management are as follows:

  1. Ratings will not go away but will be more focused on the achievement of results to aligned and agreed-upon agile goals and not retrospective.
  2. Frequent and many different conversations will replace the Annual performance review event.
  3. Managers will require capability building around all the different conversations they will need to have.
  4. There will be an increased emphasis on development for all as the world continues to change at a hyper pace.

We’ll be posting more on this topic in the weeks to come. Click on “Conversation Toolbox for Managers” if you would like a sneak peak emailed to you.

For additional information or training for your leaders on Performance Management, please contact Lighthouse NINE Group.

Phil Drouillard, ICF
Lighthouse NINE Group
One Eva Road, Suite 209 | Etobicoke, ON M9C 4Z5
Office: 416-607-5923


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