How to improve performance

To help individuals on your team improve their effectiveness, consider the following ideas.

  • Provide clear expectations. Make sure that each individual has the details on what they’re expected to do in their role. Periodically remind them of how their job performance directly supports the larger mission of the organization.
  • Listen actively to identify performance issues. When an employee isn’t performing well, don’t jump to conclusions about what’s happening. Ask open-ended questions—then listen carefully.
  • As a coach, press the right buttons. All employees have different motivators for success. Uncover each employee’s key motivator, then strive to provide the skill development, cross training and new opportunities that resonate with them.
  • Offer timely constructive criticism and praise. Don’t wait until there is a serious problem (or an annual performance review) before telling team members that a change is needed. Offering informal feedback amidst day-to-day work is valuable. Also, when things have gone well, be very generous with your praise of employees’ contributions.