Page 1

Instructor Preparation

Participant Guide

Contents Lesson 1: Introduction and Welcome ............................................................................................. 1 Lesson 2: Overview of Performance Management and the Role of the HR Practitioner ............. 19 Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback ................................................................... 35 Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process ....................................................................... 65 Lesson 5: Performance-Based Tools and Actions ...................................................................... 129 Lesson 6: Putting It All Together................................................................................................ 151 Lesson 7: Course Conclusion...................................................................................................... 159

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page i


Instructor Preparation

Participant Guide

This page intentionally left blank.

Page ii

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 1: Introduction and Welcome

Participant Guide

Lesson 1: Introduction and Welcome

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 1


Lesson 1: Introduction and Welcome

Participant Guide

Lesson 1: Introduction and Welcome

Page 2

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 1: Introduction and Welcome

Introductions

Participant Guide

Learning Points: Please share your: • Name • Current position • Location • Experience in Performance Management • Burning question

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 3


Lesson 1: Introduction and Welcome

Course Goal

Page 4

Participant Guide

Learning Points: The goal of this course is: • To provide the skills and knowledge needed to support supervisors and managers in performance management

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 1: Introduction and Welcome

Course Objectives (1 of 3)

Participant Guide

Learning Points: After completing this course, you will be able to: • Describe the phases and requirements of the performance management process • Identify the controlling authorities • Describe the functions, core responsibilities, and soft skills required of the HR Practitioner related to performance management • Identify practices that encourage more regular and meaningful communication with supervisors/managers

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 5


Lesson 1: Introduction and Welcome

Course Objectives (2 of 3)

Page 6

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • Explain the importance of each phase in relation to the overall performance management process • Identify the supervisor/manager responsibilities in each phase • Explain the practitioner’s role in each phase • Identify appropriate performance-based actions a practitioner can advise a supervisor/manager to take

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 1: Introduction and Welcome

Course Objectives (3 of 3)

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • Identify relevant authorities for the use of performance management • Demonstrate the ability to apply course content in a simulation of a year-long performance review cycle • Understand the benefit of using sound performance management techniques

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 7


Lesson 1: Introduction and Welcome

Housekeeping

Page 8

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • Start and end time for class • Timing of breaks • Smoking area • Location of bathrooms • Location of exits • Mobile devices

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 1: Introduction and Welcome

Ground Rules

Participant Guide

Learning Points: Ground rules allow the instructor(s) to get through all the lessons on schedule, and they create a successful learning environment. • Participate: To get the most out of this class, active participation is required. Active participation helps everyone learn more through the many exercises that require group activity and input. • Share experiences: Sharing individual employee relations experiences helps others. Please share successes and some learning experiences that are relevant to discussions. • Respect divergent opinions: One of the exciting, and sometimes frustrating, aspects of employee relations is very few answers apply to every situation. If there is disagreement with a statement, do it respectfully. • Ask questions: Questions are strongly encouraged. Remember, there are no dumb questions. One person’s question may well be on the minds of others, too. • Avoid private side conversations: Some topics are going to stimulate your thinking, and it might be tempting to begin discussions with others; however, it is important that everyone hear what is being said in a discussion. • Honor time commitments: Prompt attendance on everyone’s part is needed to keep things moving efficiently. Please commit to arriving on time and returning on time from lunch and breaks.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 9


Lesson 1: Introduction and Welcome

Parking Lot

Page 10

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • Should the instructor encounter a question that he or she cannot answer on the spot, the question will be placed in the “parking lot.” • The instructor will revisit the issues in the parking lot as needed and return an answer for each as soon as possible.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 1: Introduction and Welcome

Agenda

Participant Guide

Learning Points: The Performance Management for HR Practitioners course will take place over 2 days. • Day 1 will focus on an overview of performance management techniques and the general communication skills required to ensure that the process works effectively. • Day 2 will focus on the specific components of the performance management cycle. Additionally, the end of Day 2 will feature a review of the entire course and its key concepts.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 11


Lesson 1: Introduction and Welcome

Activity #1: Meeting Gone Wrong

Page 12

Participant Guide

Instructions: 1. Half of you will be assigned to explain a scene from the point of view of the employee; the other half will explain it from the point of view of the manager. 2. Watch the first scene of the video and consider what went wrong. Share these ideas in a group discussion. 3. Watch the second scene of the video. Explain the situation from the HR Practitioner perspective.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 1: Introduction and Welcome

Participant Guide

Meeting Gone Wrong Script Scene 1: This starts with a sequence of short scenes showing a male manager, RAUL, hurriedly discussing paperwork with KIM who is standing next to him. The manager is interrupted by a knock on his open door; the manager has clearly forgotten the appointment. A younger, female employee, SHELLY, enters. She is bristling with irritation and resentment. RAUL I’m pretty sure I didn’t print it out [searches his desk] and I know you didn’t e-mail it to me. KIM Well, I’ll resend it. RAUL Yeah, please. ‘Cause I can’t do what I need to do until – [knock on door] SHELLY It’s time for our meeting. RAUL Oh God, that’s right. Yeah. Come on in. SHELLY Should I come back? We can reschedule…. RAUL No, thank you. That’s fine. [Aside to the other employee] Thanks. We’ll do this later. No, I’ve got to keep this train running. I’ve got eight mid-year reviews going, plus I’ve got to type up them out — you know the drill. SHELLY Well, not really. I actually — RAUL You sit there and I sit here and we talk about your work which is, ah, pretty good, and then we do it for real in October. Got it? SHELLY [Seething pause] Got it. RAUL So, let’s see. Oh, right, let me get out that plan we developed. [Looks around at a messy desk and then locates a folder] Here it is. [Mumbles to himself as he skims it] So, we determined that you have four elements — do you have a copy of this? [She indicates no.] You should. This really should be something you have nearby at all times, and next time you should bring it to the Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 13


Lesson 1: Introduction and Welcome

Participant Guide

meeting. So, one of your objectives is [Reads aloud] ‘complete all tasks in a timely manner.’ How do you think that’s going? SHELLY Well, I wish I could finish that report, but I’m still waiting for input from Diane — RAUL That’s right, I remember. You know, it’s really important to keep the train running on this project. I think you should proceed without her input. Then, when you get it, you can work her changes in later. SHELLY That doesn’t make much sense to me. I feel like I’d be doing the work twice — RAUL [Growing exasperated] You gotta keep the train running. Your performance depends on accomplishing these objectives. When I rate you in October, I want to be able to say ‘Fully Successful’ — which I remember you’ve had some trouble getting in the past. Any questions about that? SHELLY [Glaring resentful look] I’ll try my best. RAUL Let’s move on. Did you complete the training I recommended you take? SHELLY No. RAUL You didn’t? That’s too bad. I thought doing some online training on time management would help you improve. SHELLY I started the training, but it was 4 hours long and pretty much impossible to do it all at one time. I kept getting interrupted. RAUL Well, that’s ironic. SHELLY Yup. RAUL [Long pause] The truth is: I don’t know how I’m going to give you the rating you probably think you deserve. I just don’t see the quality of work — Page 14

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 1: Introduction and Welcome

Participant Guide

SHELLY Well, I feel like I’m always choosing between quality of work and meeting deadlines — RAUL That’s your problem. You have to deliver both — perform at a high level and meet those deadlines. You have to figure this out for yourself. SHELLY Are we done? RAUL Do you have any questions? SHELLY No. RAUL Then we’re done. But remember, finish your work and complete that training, please. SHELLY Okay.

Scene 2: RONALD, the Human Resource Practitioner, in his office. The manager, RAUL, is sitting at a desk facing RONALD. RONALD So you asked to me for help with a problem employee. Tell me a little about the situation. RAUL We had our mid-year review meeting last week. It was a disaster. She has been mad at me ever since I gave her a ‘Needs Improvement’ rating last performance review cycle. She clearly blames me for holding her accountable. RONALD Tell me about the meeting itself. How did that go? RAUL Fine, I guess. I told her what I needed to tell her and then she just shut down on me. I was hoping you could help me put together a PIP for her. RONALD Did you provide her with evidence of poor performance? RAUL Absolutely! I provided her with two specific things that would disqualify her from meeting a Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 15


Lesson 1: Introduction and Welcome

Participant Guide

performance standard. She just made excuses. RONALD Did you ask about circumstances that might be affecting her work, or offer advice on how to raise her performance level? RAUL I sure did. I’m doing everything I know how to do. She just wants to get paid to show up and do a bad job.

Page 16

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 1: Introduction and Welcome

Questions

Participant Guide

What questions do you have about Lesson 1: Introduction and Welcome? You are ready to begin Lesson 2: Overview of Performance Management and the Role of the HR Practitioner.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 17


Lesson 1: Introduction and Welcome

Participant Guide

This page intentionally left blank.

Page 18

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 2: Overview of PM and the Role of the HR Practitioner

Participant Guide

Lesson 2: Overview of Performance Management and the Role of the HR Practitioner

Lesson 2: Overview of Performance Management and the Role of the HR Practitioner

Learning Points: Lesson 2: Overview of Performance Management and the Role of the HR Practitioner will provide you with a summary of the requirements of the performance management process and a description of the role that HR Practitioners fulfill within the performance management process.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 19


Lesson 2: Overview of PM and the Role of the HR Practitioner

Lesson Objectives

Page 20

Participant Guide

Learning Points: At the end of this lesson, you will be able to: • Describe the phases and requirements of the performance management process • Identify the controlling authorities • Describe the functions, core responsibilities, and soft skills required of the HR Practitioner related to performance management

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 2: Overview of PM and the Role of the HR Practitioner

What Is Performance Management?

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • Performance management is a tool that is used to track, monitor, and improve organizational performance. • Supervisors/managers are tasked with implementing the system and performing a minimum of formal responsibilities. This course emphasizes the value of doing more than the minimum. • Performance management can improve performance results. • The year-long cycle places priority on attainable, measurable goals for employees and has systems in place that actively recognize employees for meeting goals. • The system formally aligns an individual’s goals with those of DoD and the agency component.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 21


Lesson 2: Overview of PM and the Role of the HR Practitioner

Performance Management Process

Page 22

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • The performance management process contains three phases and consists of the following four elements: o Planning o Monitoring and Developing o Rating and Rewarding o Coaching and Feedback • You can see in the graphic that coaching and feedback do not constitute an actual phase in the cycle, but are repeated activities within the entire process. Effective communication allows efficient transitions throughout the performance management process. • Once one cycle is completed, it begins again.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 2: Overview of PM and the Role of the HR Practitioner

Planning Phase

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • The planning phase is the first phase of the performance management process. This is when you and your employees identify the performance expectations of the employee. • These performance expectations are written in the form of elements and standards; they should be appropriate to the employee’s job and salary level. While it is your responsibility to write the performance plan, the employee should be encouraged to offer input. • These planning meetings should occur within the first 30 days of the cycle.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 23


Lesson 2: Overview of PM and the Role of the HR Practitioner

Monitoring and Developing Phase

Page 24

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • The monitoring and developing phase is a long phase that lasts for the majority of the performance management process. Much like the planning phase, the responsibility for completing this phase falls on both the supervisor and the employee. • A formal mid-year review meeting is required for checking in on the progress of the employee’s goals; the supervisor should also provide informal feedback throughout the year. • These reviews (both formal and informal) are used to develop good habits in the employee. You should be encouraging the strong work habits that will lead to successful completion of the performance goals.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 2: Overview of PM and the Role of the HR Practitioner

Rating and Rewarding Phase

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • The final phase in the performance management process is the rating and rewarding phase. At the end of the performance management cycle, you will rate the employee’s performance based on his or her performance elements and standards. This is concluded with a performance review with the employee that discusses how successful he or she was in meeting his or her performance goals for the year. • At the end of the process, the employee is rewarded based on his or her success in meeting the performance goals.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 25


Lesson 2: Overview of PM and the Role of the HR Practitioner

Coaching and Feedback

Page 26

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • Communication occurs throughout the performance management cycle. • Feedback is provided in both formal and informal sessions. • Supervisors/managers should always be looking for coaching opportunities. • Employees take the responsibility to continually improve. • Performance evaluations are guaranteed to include all pertinent components.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 2: Overview of PM and the Role of the HR Practitioner

The Big Picture

Participant Guide

Learning Points: Good performance management: • Communicates goals to employees. • Involves employees in improving organizational effectiveness and accomplishing organizational missions and goals. • Assesses employee, team, and organizational effectiveness and performance. • Uses appropriate measures of performance to recognize and reward employees. • Can help to make determinations about hiring and staffing.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 27


Lesson 2: Overview of PM and the Role of the HR Practitioner

Authority

Page 28

Participant Guide

Learning Points: The authority to use performance management comes from a number of places: • 5 U.S.C. Chapter 43: Each agency shall develop one or more performance appraisal systems which provide for periodic appraisals of job performance of employees, encourage employee participation in establishing performance standards, and use the results of performance appraisals as a basis for training, rewarding, reassigning, promoting, reducing in grade, retaining, and removing employees. • 5 CFR Part 430 and 432 • DoDI 1400.25 Volume 430: It is DoD policy under reference (a) that the objective of performance management is to improve individual, team (where applicable), and organizational performance. • Collective bargaining agreements • Case law which sets precedents to guide decisions on current cases.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 2: Overview of PM and the Role of the HR Practitioner

HR Practitioners’ Responsibilities

Participant Guide

Learning Points: HR Practitioners have a unique set of responsibilities within the performance management process. While you are not responsible for implementing performance management, it is your job to act as a resource for those around you. HR Practitioners act on behalf of the agency to: • Protect the agency’s interests. • Ensure that actions taken are consistent with statute, regulation, and case precedent. • Understand the authorities for performance management. While working with the supervisors/managers, remember that you are there as a facilitator to the management. You are there to assist the supervisor/manager, not to do their work for them. Some examples of this support include: • Delivering and interpreting performance management policy to the supervisors/managers • Helping supervisors/managers address issues that may come up during the performance management process • Providing counsel and support to supervisors/managers • Sharing good practices such as documentation with supervisors/managers • Advising supervisors/managers on proper actions One part of protecting the agency’s interests involves using all of the

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 29


Lesson 2: Overview of PM and the Role of the HR Practitioner

Participant Guide

resources at your disposal. You need to interact with other HR Practitioners. Likewise, you can lean on your peers for assistance. You may be asked to share and find more information with: • Inquiry and Unemployment Compensation (ICUC) • Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) • Alternative Dispute Resolution services (ADR) • Employee Relations (ER) • Employee Assistance Program (EAP) • Labor Relations (LR) • Higher level management • Office of staffing • Personnel records system

Page 30

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 2: Overview of PM and the Role of the HR Practitioner

Activity #2: Skills

Participant Guide

Answer the questions posed by your instructor regarding skills required of HR Practitioners.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 31


Lesson 2: Overview of PM and the Role of the HR Practitioner

Key Points (1 of 2)

Page 32

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • The performance management process improves the overall performance of the employee and the organization. • The process has three formal phases: o Planning o Monitoring and Developing o Rating and Rewarding • Ongoing communication is critical for helping employees meet expectations.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 2: Overview of PM and the Role of the HR Practitioner

Key Points (2 of 2)

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • HR Practitioners serve two groups: agency management and other HR Specialists. • HR Practitioners must have numerous skills in order to be successful.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 33


Lesson 2: Overview of PM and the Role of the HR Practitioner

Questions

Participant Guide

What questions do you have about Lesson 2: Overview of Performance Management and the Role of the HR Practitioner? You are ready to begin Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback.

Page 34

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback

Participant Guide

Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback

Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback

Learning Points: Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback will focus on the communication skills required to effectively use performance management.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 35


Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback

Lesson Objective

Page 36

Participant Guide

Learning Points: At the end of this lesson, you will be able to identify practices that encourage more regular and meaningful communication with supervisors/managers.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback

Activity #3: Principles of Communication

Participant Guide

Instructions: As you watch the short clips in the video played by the instructor, pay special attention to how messages are passed between the sender and receiver. Try to identify what could be causing problems and how to avoid them in your own interactions. Be prepared to participate in a discussion after the video. Learning Points: As illustrated in the videos, sometimes messages are not received as intended. There are a number of potential reasons for this. • Both the sender and receiver have their own expectations, experiences, assumptions, attitudes toward work, and ways of viewing the world. • Messages never transmit 100% as intended. It is best to assume that there is going to be miscommunication. The sender often determines the form of delivery (e-mail, face to face, phone, formal appraisal) as well as the time and the place of the message. • Some things are included in the message but are not always conscious, such as tone, body language, and facial expression. • The purpose of communication should determine the form, and hence, the tone. Communication forms fall into three types: o Directive (to deliver instructions) o Non-directive (to solicit opinions, listen, collaborate, get buy-in)

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 37


Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback

Participant Guide

o Informal (to exchange pleasantries, check in on progress, to create a culture in which good communication is commonplace) Other things to consider: • You should always be aware of contradicting yourself. This contradiction could occur between your tone, your body language, or your intended message. For example, closed body language will contradict an invitation for an employee to express an opinion. • You also need to pay close attention to when, where, and how communication happens. Different messages will be understood in different ways, depending on the circumstances that surround the communication.

Page 38

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback

Participant Guide

Principles of Communication Script Scene 1: Employee, Ted, working at his desk when his supervisor, Cecilia, looks in his cubicle. CECILIA Oh good. You’re in. Gotta minute? TED Sure. Come on in. Let me pull this [pulls a chair closer]—here, have a seat. CECILIA You know I was watching you struggle last week with that printer. TED You saw that? Sheesh! Three hole-punched, double-sided nightmare. [They both laugh] CECILIA Well, when I heard that you didn’t get Tisha that report by COB, I figured it was probably related to that. TED Yeah…. CECILIA But I started thinking. You know, Ted, you’ve seemed, I don’t know, preoccupied lately. TED Really? CECILIA Yeah. I don’t know if it’s related to your late report so I thought I’d just touch base with you. Debbie said that while your first two reports were solid, this one seemed incomplete and rushed. Is there something I should know about that is affecting your work? TED [Uncomfortable, clearly debating how much to reveal] Hmm. Well, I suppose… but I just didn’t think I was bringing all that into the office though. CECILIA [Proud that she had guessed the truth.] Well, I’ve learned that its best to catch problems early and talking things over is the best way. TED Yeah, well….I got some news last week. But I’m pretty sure I can— [CECILIA’s smart phone buzzes and she looks at it. Makes a barely audible noise that indicates the incoming message is not good.] Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 39


Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback

Participant Guide

CECILIA Sorry. Go on. TED [Miffed that he doesn’t have her attention.] You know. I’ll deal with all that other stuff another time. When I’m at work, I’m going to focus on work. CECILIA Glad to hear it. Let me know if I can help. TED You bet. Scene 2: Employee, MANNY, standing at a water cooler as another employee, NIKKI, approaches. MANNY Hey, did you see that football game last night? NIKKI I sure did. It was a great game. MANNY I know, I was having a great time until the very end when… NIKKI When the referee totally blew that call? I know. It was terrible. MANNY [Voiceover] I never should have eaten all that onion for lunch. I need some gum. [Takes out a stick of gum.] MANNY Would you like some gum? NIKKI No thanks, I have to get back to work. NIKKI [Voiceover] That was so rude. I cannot believe he thought my breath was so bad he had to do something about it. [NIKKI exits the scene.] MANNY Wow, she sure left in a hurry. I hope my breath wasn’t that offensive.

Page 40

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback

Participant Guide

Scene 3: Supervisor, JANINE, sitting behind a desk with the door to the office open. An employee, TARYN, enters the room and sits down facing the supervisor. TARYN You wanted to see me? JANINE [With arms crossed and a scowl on her face] Yes. I was hoping to go over some of the work you’ve been doing for the past few months. Please have a seat. TARYN What would you like to review? [Voiceover] Wow, I thought I had been doing some really good work here. Why did they let me go on for so long if they didn’t like it? JANINE [Exasperated sigh] Well… [ominous pause] TARYN [Voiceover] I don’t know what I’ll do if they fire me over this. Why is she drawing this out so long? JANINE [Still with scowl on her face, speaking with a flat affect] That report you put together a few months ago was great. It really blew everyone away. TARYN [Voiceover] Wait, what? If it was so great, why is she frowning and speaking like that? JANINE Keep up the good work. We are all expecting a lot out of you. TARYN [Cautiously speaking] Well, thank you. I’m glad everyone liked it. JANINE You’ve been wonderful. I don’t know why you’re so nervous.

Scene 4: Office kitchen. An employee, FRANKLIN, is at the sink and there is a crowd in the background. A supervisor, CECILIA, approaches at the sink. It appears as if the crowd is all minding their business engaged in their own conversation. CECILIA There you are, I’ve been looking everywhere for you.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 41


Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback

Participant Guide

FRANKLIN Just cleaning up after lunch. What’s up? CECILIA I just saw the last project you handed in and… FRANKLIN [Apologetically] Can I please finish up here and we can discuss this in your office in about 5 minutes? CECILIA We’re both here now; we’ll discuss it now. FRANKLIN But… CECILIA [Raising voice and getting more animated] It was the weakest attempt I have ever seen. [The crowd in the background all turn to watch the scene unfold] FRANKLIN I’m sorry, but can we please… CECILIA Furthermore, we talked about steps for you to take to figure this out. I don’t see why you had so much trouble with this. FRANKLIN But… CECILIA Let me finish. It is problems like this that will result in you getting weak ratings in your annual review. You cannot ask for more responsibility and then hand in junk. FRANKLIN [Head down, speaking meekly] Sorry, I’ll do my best to fix it. CECILIA We will not have this discussion again.

Page 42

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback

Skills for Supervisors/ Managers

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • Supervisors/managers are required to possess many different skills. With regard to communicating within the performance management process, those skills include: 1. Coaching 2. Counseling 3. Providing feedback 4. Active listening 5. Providing instruction 6. Gathering information 7. Reaching an agreement 8. Understanding the employee perspective • These skills are all intertwined and will be used in combination anytime supervisors/managers are communicating with their employees.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 43


Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback

1. Coaching

Page 44

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • Supervisors/mangers have to use a deft hand while adjusting the behavior of their employees. Coaching involves more than correcting and improving poor work habits. Strong coaching also requires supervisors/managers to encourage good habits that they want to see more of. • When supervisors/managers are taking advantage of times to provide informal feedback throughout the year, they are actively coaching their employees.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback

2. Counseling

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • When supervisors/managers encounter an employee who is having trouble with poor performance or behavior, they should try and counsel him or her. • Counseling accomplishes the following tasks: o Alerts the employee that there is a problem. o Elicits information from the employee. o Guides the employee toward improvement.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 45


Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback

3. Providing Feedback

Page 46

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • When supervisors/managers are providing feedback, they need to be sure that it is constructive feedback and not needless criticism. Some useful tips for providing effective feedback include: o Convey a positive intent o Describe specifically what has been observed o State the impact of the behavior o Ask for the employee’s point of view o Focus the discussion on solutions

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback

4. Active Listening

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • Active listening plays a large role in fostering communication between a supervisor/manager and his or her employees. It relies on the supervisor/manager focusing all of his or her attention on the speaker and suspending his or her own inner monologue. • With active listening, you are not only focusing on the words the employee is saying, but also on the tone, behavior, and body language exhibited by the speaker. Active listening requires you to observe the bigger picture and perhaps detect meanings not expressly verbalized. • During this conversation, the listener should be asking clarifying questions. Avoid questions that can simply be answered yes or no. These are known as closed questions. Instead, ask questions that require more of an answer beyond “yes” or “no.”

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 47


Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback

5. Providing Instruction

Participant Guide

Learning Points: There are a few ways that a supervisor/manager can provide instruction to his or her employees. One way is an authoritarian method that shuts down communication. The more preferable way maintains the communication that is crucial to the performance management process. When providing instruction, supervisors should follow these guidelines: • Understand the employee perspective — With this style of providing instruction, supervisors/managers allow for the employee perspective to shape the task and outcomes. The employee may see obstacles or possible solutions that the supervisor/manager did not. • Arrive at an agreement — After making the request, the supervisor/manager should reach an agreement with the employee on the details of the task (such as timeline, desired outcome, etc.).

Page 48

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback

6. Gathering Information

Participant Guide

Learning Points: Making requests focuses on the results as opposed to the methodology. This allows the employee to make his or her own decisions. However, it still communicates the supervisor’s/manager’s expectations.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 49


Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback

7. Reaching an Agreement

Page 50

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • Reaching an agreement with an employee should confirm his or her commitment. • Agreements should include what will be completed, who will complete it, and a timetable for completion. • Agreements lead to consistent expectations between supervisors/ managers and employees.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback

8. Understanding the Employee Perspective

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • No two employees are the same. • Take into account each employee’s strengths, weaknesses, and comfort zones. • Employees expressing concern may not be a negative; it could show they are already working through problems.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 51


Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback

Supervisor/ Manager Responsibilities

Participant Guide

Learning Points: Supervisors/managers have certain responsibilities that go beyond using strong communication techniques. In order to be considered effective, supervisors/managers need to: • Demonstrate daily involvement in employee performance. • Document all performance-related communications and observations. • Track progress as it relates to employee goals. • Maintain an open dialogue with the HR Practitioner. Each of these responsibilities exists throughout the performance management cycle.

Page 52

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback

1. Demonstrate Daily Involvement

Participant Guide

Learning Points: One of a supervisor’s/manager’s duties in the performance management process is to be involved in his or her employees’ pursuit of their job objectives on a daily basis. Supervisors/managers can involve themselves by: • • • • •

Coaching Reviewing work Providing guidance Listening Offering motivation, etc.

Often, a supervisor/manager making himself or herself available is enough to reinforce the idea that he or she is there to assist employees.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 53


Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback

2. Document

Page 54

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • The cycle for performance management is a year long and provides for only a few formal conversations during that time. • Because the formal conversations are spread out over the year, it is difficult to remember all of the details. This is why it is important to document all performance-related communications and observations. • These documents will be used when conducting performance reviews. It is the most effective way to ensure that nothing is omitted from the final review. • Maintaining good records can illuminate trends in behavior and provide support for decisions. If a supervisor’s/manager’s ratings are challenged at the end of the year, the more information he or she has supporting the decision, the easier it will be to support his or her case. However, because these documents are subject to discovery in litigation, supervisors/managers should not write down information that would embarrass them personally or embarrass DoD as an organization.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback

3. Track Progress

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • One of the benefits of performance management is that supervisors/managers set themselves up to know exactly the type of results they will obtain. There should be no surprises. • The primary reason for this is because they will be tracking progress throughout the cycle. From the time supervisors/managers set the objectives with the employee until the time they review the product at the end of the cycle, they should be staying abreast of the progress. • Supervisors/managers can monitor the progress through informal feedback sessions. During these checkups, they should be inquiring as to the progress the employee is making (and coaching or providing feedback as needed). Additionally, they should have at least one formal interim review during the cycle. • Techniques for fostering communication include: o Schedule monthly check-in. o Schedule team meetings. o Use Outlook Task Manager as a mental jogger. o Monitor employee progress on an assignment. o Post team progress on goals in a shared place or virtual place.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 55


Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback

4. Supervisor/ Practitioner Dialogue

Page 56

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • Supervisors/managers are not implementing the performance management process alone. Some of their primary allies are the HR Practitioners. • As an HR Practitioner, you should be familiar with the performance management process; this makes you a great resource when supervisors/managers run into issues. Anytime they run into a roadblock with one of their employees, they can fall back and seek advice from an HR Practitioner. Sometimes, your removed perspective will offer insight that the supervisor/manager may have missed. • Additionally, anytime supervisors/managers are dealing with a potential employee problem, they should notify an HR Practitioner. Just as you expect zero surprises in the performance management process, HR expects zero surprises as well. • It can be easy for supervisors/managers to forget that they have support in their position. But just as supervisors/managers serve as a coach and mentor to their employees, you can provide that support to them. If they don’t seek you out for advice, seek them out. • You are responsible for assisting supervisors/managers in executing the performance management process. You can do this by: o Providing a resource to assist supervisors/managers. o Educating the supervisors/managers to communicate and document throughout the performance management process. o Modeling ideal communication skills for supervisors/managers. September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback

Activity #4: Soft Skills

Participant Guide

Learning Points: As an HR Practitioner, you have the ability to influence the behavior of the supervisors/managers in your agency. • Use your soft skills expertise to educate and assist supervisors/managers in their interactions with employees. • Actively model good communication habits and skills so that those around you know what is expected of them. If you stress the importance of communication in the workplace, others will follow your example.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 57


Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback

Activity #5: Communication Practices

Page 58

Participant Guide

Instructions: Take a few minutes to fill out the Brainstorming Worksheet with ways that you can encourage more frequent and meaningful communication with supervisors/managers. Be prepared to share your ideas with the class.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback

Participant Guide

Brainstorming Worksheet Instructions: Use the space below to describe practices that could be used to encourage more frequent and effective coaching of supervisors/managers.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 59


Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback

Activity #6: RolePlaying Communication

Page 60

Participant Guide

Instructions: 1. Partner up with another participant. 2. One of you will assume the role of the supervisor with the employee described below, and the other will assume the role of the HR Practitioner. 3. Spend about 10 minutes on each scenario. 4. As you advance through the scenarios, alternate roles with your partner. 5. While you are acting out your roles, be sure to practice the following skills (especially when in the role of the supervisor): • Actively listen with attentive posture. • Use non-threatening body language. • Paraphrase. • Ask open-ended questions. 6. Your goal is to come up with a solution to the problem so that the employee can improve his or her performance.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback

Participant Guide

Role-Playing - Communication Scenarios

Scenario 1: • GS-5 with 2 years of experience. • Employee just had her first child. • Employee hasn’t received training recently and is apprehensive about the new document managing systems. • The last rating was fully acceptable, but the current supervisor thinks the rating was higher than it should be. • Current supervisor feels that the employee’s performance has flatlined. Scenario 2: • GS-9 with 15 years of service. • Employee has attended all provided training. • While the employee’s performance in the past was good, the quality has consistently declined. • The supervisor has just assigned a new task to the employee and is trying to ensure that he returns to his previous level of quality. Scenario 3: • GS-9 who recently came over from the private sector. • Employee has had trouble adjusting to the culture at the new location. • Employee recently missed a deadline that the supervisor assigned. • The supervisor is now inquiring about when that assignment can be finished. Scenario 4: • GS-7 who was just hired out of school. • Employee has never before worked in an office setting. • There have been complaints about the employee regarding unprofessional behavior. • The supervisor is trying to coach the employee on how to better survive in the office.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 61


Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback

Key Points (1 of 2)

Page 62

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • Communication plays a vital role in ensuring the success of the performance management process. • Despite there being only a handful of formal communications throughout the year, supervisors/managers have plenty of opportunities to offer informal coaching or feedback. • Messages can lose their meaning between sender and receiver.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback

Key Points (2 of 2)

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • Informal coaching and feedback sessions provide the supervisor/manager with an opportunity to modify poor work habits and encourage positive work habits. • Good communication skills will lower the chances that a message is misunderstood. • Supervisors/managers need to be able to integrate their employee’s point of view into their decisions.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 63


Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback

Questions

Participant Guide

What questions do you have about Lesson 3: Communication, Coaching, and Feedback? You are ready to begin Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process.

Page 64

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Participant Guide

Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Learning Points: Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process will describe each of the three phases of the performance management process.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 65


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Lesson Objectives

Page 66

Participant Guide

Learning Points: At the end of this lesson, you will be able to: • Explain the importance of each phase in relation to the overall performance management process • Identify the supervisor/manager responsibilities in each phase • Explain the practitioner’s role in each phase

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

The Performance Management Process

Participant Guide

Learning Points: The performance management process contains three phases: 1. Planning 2. Monitoring and developing 3. Rating and rewarding

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 67


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Why is Planning Phase Important?

Page 68

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • The first phase of the performance management process is the planning phase. The planning phase sets the stage for the success of the process for the rest of the year. • During the planning phase, supervisor/managers will meet with their employees and set their performance expectations for the upcoming year. This is the phase where abstract, organizational goals get turned into specific, measurable actions. The creation of elements and standards allows the employee to see how he or she will be successful over the course of the upcoming year and what work he or she will be held responsible for.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

What Is a Performance Plan?

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • Elements are distinct from standards in that an element is a description of work to be done, and the standard is the ruler by which the work is measured. • A performance plan can be adjusted throughout the year to reflect changes in the agency’s mission/goals.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 69


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Supervisor/ Manager Responsibilities in Planning Phase

Page 70

Participant Guide

Learning Points: Supervisors/managers have unique responsibilities in each phase of the performance management process. The outcome is a performance plan for each of their employees. During the planning phase, it is the supervisor’s/manager’s responsibility to: 1. Analyze the agency’s goals and translate them into tasks for their employees. 2. Translate these tasks into elements and standards. 3. Share the elements and standards with their employees. 4. Work with their employees to overcome potential objections and challenges. 5. Reach an agreement on a final performance plan.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

1. Analyze Agency Goals

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • The first step in creating a performance plan is to align the agency’s goals with tasks that employees will complete over the next year. The employee should be able to complete the tasks within the year. • These tasks need to be specific and in line with the employee’s job and salary level.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 71


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

2. Translate Tasks into Elements and Standards

Page 72

Participant Guide

Learning Points: The difference between a task and an element and standard is a subtle but important distinction: Task descriptions focus on activities, while elements and standards focus on results.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

3. Share with Employee

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • After the supervisor/manager has created a list of job elements and standards for the employee, the supervisor/manager needs to meet with the employee. Because one of the key benefits of performance management is increased employee ownership, it is necessary to involve the employee in the planning phase. • During this meeting the supervisor/manager needs to communicate the job elements and standards he or she has written for the employee. The supervisor/manager also needs to explain how these elements and standards relate to the larger agency goals.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 73


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

4. Work with Employee

Page 74

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • During the meeting with the employee, the supervisor/manager should be soliciting the employee’s input on the elements and standards. • Supervisors/managers should create the final performance plan only after getting this input.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

5. Reach Agreement on Final Plan

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • Finalizing the plan necessitates, but cannot require, agreement between the supervisor/manager and the employee. • Having the employee agree to the performance plan at the start of the year means he or she will not be surprised during the end-ofyear meeting. • Remember that the purpose of the performance plan is to allow the supervisor/manager to apply a performance rating to the employee at the end of the performance management cycle.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 75


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Performance Elements

Participant Guide

Learning Points: Performance plans have: • Critical elements • Non-critical elements • Additional performance elements Performance elements directly relate to the performance tasks identified earlier. Elements capture what needs to be done; standards capture how well something needs to be done.

Page 76

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Critical Elements

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • A critical element is an assignment or responsibility that is of such importance that an unacceptable performance in that element would result in the determination that the employee’s performance is unacceptable. • Every performance plan must contain at least one critical element. Because they are the cornerstones of an employee’s performance rating, the critical elements included in the performance plan must be within the employee’s control.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 77


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Non-Critical Elements

Page 78

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • A non-critical element is an aspect of individual, team, or organizational performance. Non-critical elements are always separate from critical elements, but can still be considered in the performance rating. • Unlike critical elements, failure to achieve a non-critical element does not automatically result in an employee’s earning an unacceptable rating. • Non-critical elements are also applicable to a group of employees. They are the only way that a group or team’s performance can be included in an individual’s performance plan. • Despite the term “non-critical,” non-critical elements are still important in the performance review. Non-critical elements can add a lot of weight to a performance review; they just cannot result in an automatic rating of unacceptable.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Additional Performance Elements

Participant Guide

Learning Points: Additional performance elements are also non-critical and do not contribute to the performance rating, but they do provide agencies with another tool for communicating performance expectations important to the organization. You might include additional elements if you need to set expectations for: • New work assignments that are to be tracked, measured, and developed, but that should not impact an employee’s performance rating. • Group performance goals that should not be included in an individual’s performance rating. • Criteria for determining eligibility for awards that may not based on performance ratings. In essence, they are dimensions or aspects of overall performance the agency wishes to communicate and appraise, but which will not be used in assigning a summary level. Their major distinctions from non-critical elements are they cannot be used in assigning a summary level and additional performance elements do not require a performance standard. They allow agencies to factor group or team performance into the performance plan of employees under two-level (Pass/Fail) summary appraisal programs. Including additional performance elements encourages a dialogue among supervisors, employees, and peers that might not have taken place if they had not been included in a performance plan or goal statement. An agency could include items employees are not ready to have affect their ratings of

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 79


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Participant Guide

record, but which may be used in the future as non-critical elements. One example would be appraising "team interaction" in a group that has not had sufficient time or experience with such concepts and behaviors. Because no standard is required, additional performance elements also might be appropriate when the organization has not decided what measurements are valid or who the most credible rater(s) is. Assessments on additional performance elements that make distinctions above the Fully Successful or equivalent level may be used as the basis for granting awards. Such a use of additional performance elements is a perfectly reasonable way to meet the legal requirement at section 4302(a)(3) of Title 5, U.S.C. to "use the results of performance appraisals as a basis for rewarding employees."

Page 80

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Effective Performance Elements

Participant Guide

Learning Points: To be effective, an element: • Should be clearly defined stand-alone segments of an employee’s responsibilities. • Should outline responsibilities that are essential to the work of the organization. Performance elements can cascade from the supervisor’s performance plan and should reflect the supervisor’s goal when used for team leads.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 81


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

SMART Standards

Page 82

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • Performance Standards should be written as SMART goals that are specific to a given task and written according to the job requirements. o Specific — The performance standard should be stated as simply, concisely, and explicitly as possible. This answers questions such as: how much, for whom, and for what? o Measurable — What is used to determine success in achieving the performance standard. Writing measurable performance standards allows for a clearer, more objective evaluation. o Aligned — How the employee’s work fits into the organization’s goals and priorities. The organization’s mission and function statement and other strategic and project planning documents provide the basis and context for the work and its relationship to the greater DoD mission. Establishing the “line of sight” is important because it underscores the importance of duties and how they support the organization. o Realistic/Relevant — “Realistic” means that the achievement of a job objective is something an employee or team can reasonably be expected to do to support a work-unit goal. The job objective is achievable with the resources and personnel available and within the time available. “Relevant” means that the job objective is important to the employee and the organization. o Time-based — Where applicable, performance standards should outline specific time frames for the relevant performance appraisal period. Performance standards should not be written to September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

• •

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

Participant Guide

reflect assignments or goals that are longer than the performance appraisal period. Likewise, a critical standard should not be for fewer than 90 days in duration. If a multiplephase project is being evaluated, it is important to name the specific outcome that is expected for the current period. Performance standards should be written according to the level of output that will result in a Level 3 Rating. Not every performance standard has to have a quantitative measure assigned to it, but whenever possible, supervisors should include specific deadlines, time limitations, budget restrictions, or other measures for quality, quantity, timeliness, or cost-effectiveness.

September 2011

Page 83


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Activity #7: Improving Elements and Standards

Page 84

Participant Guide

Instructions: Revise the objectives on the next page into quality elements and standards.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Participant Guide

Improving Elements and Standards Worksheet Old Objective Respond to all correspondence in a timely manner.

Quality Elements and Standards

Show an improvement in office demeanor.

Demonstrate consistency over the next 18 months.

Complete all assignments in a manner that satisfies the recipient.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 85


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

The Planning Meeting

Participant Guide

Learning Points: Supervisors/managers need to be well prepared when going into a planning meeting with an employee. This will not only result in a more efficient meeting and send the proper message to the employee, it will also lead to better performance plans. Before going into a planning meeting, supervisors/managers should: • Know how the employee’s responsibilities fit into the organization’s priorities. • Prepare a list of questions to solicit employee perspective. Once supervisors/managers are conducting a planning meeting, they should: • Discuss work done at a program or project level to avoid discussion of details. • Share with the employee the importance of each element and objective and together classify them as critical or non-critical. • Use a checklist or agenda for each meeting.

Page 86

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

The Practitioner’s Role

Participant Guide

Learning Points: Supervisors/managers are not alone as they prepare for their planning meetings. As an HR Practitioner, it is your job to offer support and guidance as needed to the supervisors/managers in your organization by: • Offering a pre-planning meeting with them. • Providing guidance on preparing for and conducting a planning meeting. • Assisting with, reviewing, and providing guidance on writing good elements and standards. • Providing guidance to supervisors/managers on Individual Development Plans (IDPs).

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 87


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Participant Guide

Activity #8: Coaching for a Planning Meeting

Page 88

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Participant Guide

ILT Coaching for a Planning Meeting Scene: The same male manager, RAUL, from the “Meeting Gone Wrong” video returns. He enters the room of the HRP, RONALD. RONALD Right on time! Come on in! How are you today? RAUL Doing well. A bit busy; you know how it is here. I’ve got four planning meetings just this week. RONALD [Laughs] So why don’t you catch up on things with Shelly. From your e-mails, it sounds like you had some counseling sessions with her. RAUL Sure did. It seemed to really help. She was disappointed with the rating I gave her, but she wasn’t surprised. So, based on that I think talking with her more often has helped. RONALD That’s good to hear. RAUL You know, it goes both ways. I think -- I know I’ve been pretty short tempered with her this year. And when I thought she was just phoning it in, I find out she was having trouble with a coworker—but we worked that out. RONALD Great. How ‘bout her performance? RAUL I can’t say I’ve seen huge progress, but I can say I know more about how she works and how she thinks. RONALD That’s good information to have for your meeting. RAUL I think so too. I was hoping you could help me with her draft performance plan. RONALD Happy to help. RAUL [Pulls out a piece of paper] I brought a list of tasks I need to do as a supervisor over the coming Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 89


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Participant Guide

year and thought you could help me write some really specific objectives. [Camera zooms out as the two start discussing the document.]

Page 90

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Activity #9: Coaching Supervisors/ Managers for a Planning Meeting

Participant Guide

Instructions: 1. Partner with another participant. 2. One of you will assume the role of the supervisor preparing for an employee’s planning meeting; the other will assume the role of the HR Practitioner. 3. Each scenario describes an employee that the supervisor is preparing for. Spend about 10 minutes on each scenario. 4. As you advance through the scenarios, alternate roles with your partner. 5. As you go through the planning meeting, try to remember the ways in which an HR Practitioner can help in preparing for a planning meeting: • Assist in writing elements and standards. • Provide guidance on how to conduct the meeting. • Ensure that the supervisor is fully prepared for the meeting.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 91


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Participant Guide

Coaching Supervisors/Managers for a Planning Meeting Scenarios Scenario 1: • GS-5 with 2 years of experience. • Employee just had her first child. • Employee hasn’t received training recently and is apprehensive about the new document managing systems. • The last rating was fully acceptable, but the current supervisor thinks that rating was higher than it should be. • The employee recently has demonstrated problems with tardiness and at times has shown a negative attitude toward her superiors. • Her supervisor is struggling to write measurable objectives for the employee. Scenario 2: • GS-9 with 15 years of service. • Employee has attended all provided training. • While the employee’s performance in the past was good, the quality has consistently declined. • The supervisor used to be able to rely on this employee. However, recently the supervisor believes that the employee is not as reliable (both in terms of quality of performance and timeliness in submitting assignments). • The supervisor is finding it difficult to communicate her expectations to the employee. Scenario 3: • GS-9 who recently came over from the Department of Transportation. • Employee has had trouble adjusting to the culture at the new location. • At the end of the last cycle, the employee missed one deadline, but still completed the work. • The employee seems to think that she is on an island and has no support. Likewise, the employee does not support her coworkers. • The supervisor is having a hard time speaking with the employee and encouraging her to support her co-workers. Scenario 4: • GS-7 who was just hired out of school. • Employee has never before worked in an office setting. • There have been complaints about the employee regarding unprofessional behavior. • The work he submitted has been satisfactory, but could be better. • The supervisor is unsure how to phrase the objectives so as to increase the quality of work.

Page 92

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

What is the Monitoring and Developing Phase?

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • The second phase of the performance management process is the monitoring and developing phase. This phase constitutes all of the time between the creation of the performance plan and the execution of the final performance rating. • The purpose of this phase is to ensure that employees are on track to meet the elements and standards in their performance plan. • In this phase, supervisors/managers have opportunities to coach their employees and positively modify their behavior. Of course, supervisors/managers will be offering informal feedback to their employees throughout the cycle. • During this phase, supervisors/managers should meet with each employee for a formal mid-year review.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 93


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Supervisor/ Manager Activities During This Phase

Page 94

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • Even though the employee’s job objectives provide a road map for the employee to succeed, they should not go unsupervised for the rest of the year. The supervisor/manager should regularly communicate with and provide encouragement, constructive feedback, and appreciation to all employees. • The midterm review meeting is a requirement and an opportunity to formally check in on employees. • Developing employees can grow a team’s skills. • Identify any deficiencies in performance with the employee and discuss any corrective measures.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Supervisor/ Manager Responsibilities in Monitoring and Developing Phase

Participant Guide

Learning Points: As in the other phases of the performance management process, supervisors/managers have certain responsibilities in the monitoring and developing phase. The actions they must take include: • Conduct a mid-year review meeting. • Look for challenges and training opportunities to develop their employees’ skills. • Aid employees’ pursuits toward both the performance plan and overall career development. • Adjust the performance plan.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 95


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Mid-Year Review Meeting

Page 96

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • The purpose of the mid-year review meeting is to check an employee’s progress in achieving his or her goals. During this checkup, the supervisor/manager should acknowledge what is working and encourage the employee to continue that behavior. • Additionally, the mid-year review offers supervisors/managers a chance to correct behaviors that are not working. • The mid-year review should not be the first time that employees are receiving feedback on their work. Supervisors/managers should be providing feedback consistently from the point of creating the performance plan up until the year-end review is completed. Neither the supervisor/manager nor the employee should be surprised by the topic and tone of a mid-year review. • This review is another excellent chance for supervisors/managers to provide feedback to employees and shape their professional habits.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Coaching Employees

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • The mid-year review also provides supervisors/managers with an excellent chance to coach their employees. Aside from just discussing the performance plan, they can inquire into the employee’s short- and long-term goals. With these goals in mind, supervisors/managers can direct employees to training opportunities that will help them further their career. • Additionally, supervisors/managers can measure how engaged the employee is. If the supervisor/manager learns that an employee is just floating through and does not seem too engaged, they can offer more challenging opportunities to encourage increased performance.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 97


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Employee Performance

Page 98

Participant Guide

Learning Points: During the monitoring and developing phase, supervisors/managers may elect to use the following measures to support the coaching aspects of the mid-year review: • Individual Development Plan (IDP) • Performance Improvement Period (PIP) • Denial of Within-Grade Increase (WGI)

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Individual Development Plan

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • When supervisors/managers work with an employee to identify short- and long-term goals, they can take the time to create an IDP. The IDP allows the employee to not only identify long-term goals and the short-term goals that will allow the employee to achieve the long-term goals, it also allows the employee to identify what methods he or she will use to achieve these goals. This could include a number of different types of training: o In-house training o On-the-job training o Off-site training o Individual supervisory training • Depending on what the employee’s goals are and what training is readily available, the combination of sources will vary.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 99


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Performance Improvement Period

Page 100

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • If an employee is failing to perform adequately, supervisors/managers can work with you to develop a PIP for that employee. The PIP provides a formal opportunity to let an employee know that his or her performance is lacking in certain areas and to create a plan to improve that performance. • The PIP should not only indicate what the problem areas are, but it should include a road map for improving performance. As usual, these guidelines need to be clear, observable, and measurable. • Lastly, the PIP needs to include a time frame in which these improvements need to be made.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Delay/Denial of Within-Grade Increase

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • Within-Grade Increases (WGIs) advance an employee to the next step within his or her current grade. They can be used only when an employee’s performance falls within an acceptable level of performance. • If an employee drops below the satisfactory rating, a WGI denial or delay is supposed to take effect automatically. • If the current performance is not accurately reflected in the most recent performance review (rating of record), supervisors/managers are required to prepare a more current (and accurate) rating of record.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 101


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Practitioner’s Role in Monitoring and Developing

Page 102

Participant Guide

Learning Points: During the monitoring and developing phase, your role as support for supervisors/managers includes: • Provide guidance on preparing for and conducting a mid-term review. • Work with the employee development specialists to guide supervisors/managers in selecting and enrolling in performanceenhancing training. • Generate a PIP if necessary, with input from supervisors/managers.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Participant Guide

Activity #10: Coaching for a Mid-Year Review Meeting

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 103


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Participant Guide

Coaching for a Mid-Year Review Meeting Scene: RONALD is at his desk, as before. The manager, RAUL walks in. RONALD Great to see you. Welcome back! RAUL Long time, no see. Here we are, 6 months later. RONALD Time sure does fly. Let’s get on to it. I understand that your planning meeting with Shelly went really well. RAUL Yes, we were able to put together a performance plan and set some tangible goals for her to reach in the next year. She seems really happy with that meeting, so I think we’re on the right track. RONALD What made the difference? RAUL Well, she’s been thriving ever since I’ve been able to give her more feedback. And I’m guessing that she hasn’t really had clear objectives in the past. So now she really knows what she needs to be doing and what I’m looking for. RONALD Oh, great. Glad to hear that. What concerns do you have going into this mid-year meeting? RAUL She’s having trouble with the new data system; I know she’s asked a few other people around the office for help, but I think she’s just not getting it. RONALD Would training increase her skill with the data software? RAUL That’s a good idea. She’s had trouble completing assigned training though—she says there’s no time. RONALD See if you can adjust her work load to accommodate training. That might help. RAUL That’s a good idea. I’ll see what I can do.

Page 104

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Participant Guide

RONALD And don’t forget—you should let her know that you’ve seen an improvement. Give her some praise, we could all stand to hear it, every once in a while. RAUL Great, thanks for the tips.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 105


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Activity #11: Coaching Supervisors/ Managers for a Mid-Year Review Meeting

Page 106

Participant Guide

Instructions: 1. Partner with another participant. 2. One of you will assume the role of the supervisor preparing for an employee’s mid-year review, and the other will assume the role of the HR Practitioner. 3. Each scenario describes an employee that the supervisor is preparing for. Spend about 10 minutes on each scenario. 4. As you advance through the scenarios, alternate roles with your partner.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Participant Guide

Coaching for Mid-Year Review Meeting Scenarios

Employee 1: • GS-5 with 2 years experience. • Employee just had her first child. • Employee hasn’t received training recently and is apprehensive about the new document managing systems. • The last rating was fully acceptable, but the current performance doesn’t support that rating. • The employee recently has demonstrated problems with tardiness and at times has shown a negative attitude toward her superiors. • Since the planning meeting, the tardiness has improved slightly, and now the employee will call if she knows she will be late. • Despite work to improve the employee’s attitude, she still comes across as negative. • The supervisor is unsure how to succinctly present his concerns to the employee. Employee 2: • GS-9 with 15 years of service. • Employee has attended all provided training. • While the employee’s performance in the past was good, the quality has consistently declined. • The supervisor used to be able to rely on this employee. However, recently the supervisor thinks that the employee is not as reliable (both in terms of quality of performance and timeliness submitting assignments). • The employee can be seen wandering around the office and making small talk with other employees. • The supervisor knows what he wants to say, but is unsure how it should be presented during the mid-year review.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 107


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Rating and Rewarding Phase

Page 108

Participant Guide

Learning Points: The culmination of the performance management cycle is the year-end review. At this time, the supervisor/manager meets with his or her employees and rates their performance based on how well they met the objectives laid out in the performance plan.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Purpose of Rating and Rewarding Phase

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • Every aspect of the performance management process is set up so that results can be measured. The rating phase allows for the formal measurement of the elements in the performance plan. The rating phase allows an organization to measure how well it achieved the goals it set out to accomplish. • Additionally, the performance rating allows an organization to quantify its success (or failure). • Employees are paid based on their performance rating, in order to promote continued success. This sums up the performance management process. It is completely transparent: Employees know what is expected of them at the start of the year, and they know how to achieve success. When they do achieve success, they are rewarded accordingly. • Similarly, the supervisor/manager knows what the employees are being held responsible for, and how successful those employees are in achieving their goals.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 109


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Supervisor/ Manager Responsibilities

Participant Guide

Learning Points: During this phase, supervisors/managers have an assortment of responsibilities: • Conduct an end-of-year meeting with the employee • Provide a rating on each performance element on which the employee has had an opportunity to perform • Prepare a written narrative • Clearly communicate to the employee each rating that has been assigned and the reasons behind each The end-of-year meeting is not a planning meeting for the next cycle. It is used only to provide an appraisal of the prior year’s performance. Planning for the next year will not happen until next year’s performance management cycle begins.

Page 110

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Tips for Employee SelfAssessment

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • When a supervisor/manager sets the appointment with an employee, the supervisor/manager encourages the employee to fill out a selfassessment. This is a narrative description, in the employee’s own words, detailing his or her accomplishments relative to his or her objectives. This assessment provides the supervisor/manager with more information to be used when evaluating employees. • Just as the supervisor/manager will have documentation that supports his or her rating of an employee, the employee should bring documentation that supports his or her argument for a rating. • The supervisor/manager should take the employee’s selfassessment and supporting documentation into account when determining the rating during the end-of-year review.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 111


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Rating of Record

Participant Guide

Learning Points: Performance appraisal programs shall contain at least a 60-day minimum period of performance that must be completed before a performance rating may be prepared. A rating of record should be given to the employee as soon as practical after the end of the appraisal period.

Page 112

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Considerations for the Rating of Record

Participant Guide

Learning Points: While supervisors/managers are determining the rating of record for a given employee, they have a number of pieces of information to weigh: • Their own documentation of observed performance. Over the last year they should have maintained a file of observations about the employee’s performance. • The employee’s self-assessment and supporting facts. The employee should present supporting evidence for his or her idea of the rating he or she deserves. • The customer. How did the recipient or beneficiary of the work performed respond to it?

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 113


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Preparing for an End-of-Year Meeting

Page 114

Participant Guide

Learning Points: When supervisors/managers are conducting an end-of-year meeting, as with any other meeting, they should prepare an agenda or checklist beforehand. Prior to even entering the meeting they should: • Review the employee’s self-assessment. • Create an agenda for the meeting. • Prepare questions that aim to clarify their understanding of the employee’s accomplishments. • Plan their response to any questions about recommended ratings.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Conducting an End-of-Year Meeting

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • After the supervisor/manager has prepared for the end-of-year review with an employee, it is time to conduct the meeting. During the meeting, the following topics need to be discussed: o The employee’s self-assessment o Employee job elements and standards o Accomplishments and how they link to organizational goals • There should also be discussion of areas of the employee’s performance that have shown improvement, and those that need further improvement. • Supervisors/managers should ask clarifying questions to get a better idea of what the employee has done; however, they need to try to let the employee do most of the talking. • If adequate feedback has been provided throughout the year, there should be no surprises for either party.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 115


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Ratings Levels

Page 116

Participant Guide

Learning Points: Ratings levels are specific to each component within DoD so the number of levels and the rating itself will be expressed differently across the individual components.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Types of Recognition

Participant Guide

Learning Points: Employees who reach a given rating are eligible for various types of recognition. The recognition is not guaranteed and may vary in nature. Types of possible recognition include: • Time-off awards • On-the-spot awards • Bonus awards with summary rating • Details • Certificates of appreciation • Pat on the back • Public acknowledgement • Career development discussion (promotion possibility in conjunction with the IDP) • Supervisor/manager can recommend a quality step increase (QSI) for a top-rated employee. This is an automatic increase in step, regardless of where the employee is in the rating period. • Awards and rewards may vary based on the component and DoD agency program.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 117


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

HR Practitioner’s Role

Page 118

Participant Guide

Learning Points: During the rating and rewarding phase, you are responsible for: • Providing guidance on preparing for the end-of-year meeting. • Assisting supervisors/managers with identifying rewards. • With the supervisors/managers, examining and evaluating evidence and documentation to determine a rating recommendation. • Providing guidance for supervisors/managers on delivering the rating recommendation and the potential pushback. • Providing guidance to supervisors/managers on recommendation for denial of Within-Grade Increases.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Participant Guide

Activity #11: Coaching for an End-of-Year Meeting

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 119


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Participant Guide

ILT Coaching for an End-of-Year Meeting RONALD Here we are again! RAUL [laughter] Fancy meeting you here. RONALD Let’s talk about how your last meeting with Shelly went. RAUL Well, it was pretty good. I took your advice and really took the time to prepare and think out how I thought she could improve and work toward her goals. RONALD Oh? RAUL Yeah, she’s met a lot of the short-term goals that we had for her—she’s been a bit more proactive about her work quality, she took the training I recommended—she seemed to really benefit from that. I haven’t seen her walking around the office asking basic questions in a long time. RONALD Oh great. That’s good to hear. I’m glad that training worked for her. So what are you thinking about, going into the end-of-year meeting? RAUL Well, her work and improvement has been so good, I was thinking we might be able to offer her some sort of award. I don’t know what would really be appropriate though… RONALD Well, let’s talk about it. Do you think maybe a few extra vacation days or a notice in the office newsletter about her great work on that last big project that she had would be something she’d appreciate? I’m really glad to hear she’s made such great progress! RAUL Yeah, that sounds great. RONALD Okay, cool. Let’s see, what else… do you have any tangible evidence of her good work that you can show her? Like maybe e-mails? RAUL Oh, yeah, I do. I can print some of those to refer to during the meeting. That’s a great idea.

Page 120

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Participant Guide

RONALD Good, she should also bring her self-evaluation to the meeting, so you all can discuss if you’re on the same page with her work and progress. Is there anything else you’d like to discuss? RAUL Well, I was hoping we could talk about the rating recommendation. RONALD Okay, well. Have you been giving her feedback on projects as they come in? RAUL Yes, I’ve been trying to make more time for my employees and being more proactive about giving praise or corrections to their work. I think it’s really helped both with morale and work ethic. It’s easier for everyone to catch an incorrect action earlier rather than later… I think she’s really appreciated the feedback. RONALD This is great news! You seem to have really turned it around this year.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 121


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Activity #12: Coaching Supervisors/ Managers for an End-of-Year Meeting

Page 122

Participant Guide

Instructions: 1. Divide into pairs. 2. One of you will assume the role of the supervisor preparing for an end-of-year review; the other will assume the role of the HR Practitioner assisting in the preparation. 3. Spend about 10 minutes on each scenario. 4. As you advance through the scenarios, rotate roles with your partner so you each get to play the supervisor and the HR Practitioner. 5. As the HR Practitioner, try and help the supervisor reach a decision as to the rating he or she will apply to the employee in question. In addition, have the supervisor discuss any rewards that may be used for motivating the employee. 6. You can also use this as a chance for additional coaching of the supervisor.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Participant Guide

Coaching for an End-of Year Meeting Scenarios

Employee 1: • GS-5 with 2 years of experience. • Employee just had her first child. • Employee hasn’t received training recently and is apprehensive about the new document managing systems • The last rating was fully acceptable, but the current performance doesn’t support that rating. • The employee recently has demonstrated problems with tardiness and at times has shown a negative attitude toward her superiors. • The supervisor’s documentation reveals: o Since the planning meeting, the tardiness has improved slightly, and now the employee will call if she knows she will be late. o Despite work to improve her attitude, the employee still comes across as negative, and there have been e-mails sent to the supervisor concerning her attitude. • The employee’s self-assessment says: o While tardiness may have been an issue on occasion, each time it was related to medical issues with her infant child. o Any complaints of a bad attitude are blown out of proportion. The employee does everything asked of her, and no one has complained to her personally. Employee 2: • GS-9 with 15 years of service. • Employee has attended all provided training. • While the employee’s performance in the past was good, the quality has consistently declined. • The supervisor used to be able to rely on the employee. However, at the start of the year the supervisor believed that this employee was not as reliable (both in terms of quality of performance and timeliness submitting assignments). • The supervisor’s documentation reveals: o The mid-year review showed that the employee did not feel challenged and was bored. o An IDP was created and further training was explored. o Additional responsibilities have been added to the employee’s workload. o Performance issues have almost completely disappeared. • The employee’s self-assessment says: o He has taken on more responsibilities. o Existing responsibilities are all being met and/or exceeded.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 123


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Participant Guide

Employee 3: • GS-9 who recently came over from the Department of Transportation. • Employee has had trouble adjusting to the culture at the new location. • At the end of the last cycle, the employee missed one deadline, but still completed the work. • The employee seemed to feel that she was on an island and had no support. Likewise, she did not support her coworkers. • The supervisor’s documentation reveals: o All of the employee’s work has been submitted on time, and no more deadlines have been missed. o The employee appears to go out of her way to help others, and the quality of her work may be suffering because of it. • The employee’s self-assessment says: o All work has been turned in well in advance of deadlines and has met all quality standards. o She goes out of her way to assist her coworkers but still feels ostracized by them. o It can’t be her fault that she is not viewed as a team player. The other employees avoid her. Employee 4: • GS-7 who was just hired out of school. • Employee has never before worked in an office setting. • There were complaints about the employee regarding unprofessional behavior. • The work submitted in the past has been satisfactory, but could be better. • The supervisor’s notes reveal: o The employee seems to be adapting to an office setting, and there have been no further complaints. o While behavior has improved, the quality of work has not. • The employee’s self-assessment says: o He is one of the most popular people in the office and is happy to be such. o The quality of his work is top-notch and any criticism stems from ignorance and old-fashioned ideology.

Page 124

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Key Points (1 of 2)

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • A well-written performance plan is a road map for the employee. • Effective performance management meetings are the result of advance preparation and thought. • Effective job elements and standards are clear and follow the SMART principle.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 125


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Key Points (2 of 2)

Page 126

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • Employee input should be taken into consideration while adjusting and finalizing the performance plan. • Employees should be encouraged to write and submit a selfassessment. • Year-end reviews provide closure on the yearly performance management cycle.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Questions

Participant Guide

What questions do you have about Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process? You are ready to begin Lesson 5: Performance-Based Tools and Actions.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 127


Lesson 4: The Performance Management Process

Participant Guide

This page intentionally left blank.

Page 128

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 5: Performance-Based Tools and Actions

Participant Guide

Lesson 5: Performance-Based Tools and Actions

Lesson 5: PerformanceBased Tools and Actions

Learning Points: • Lesson 5: Performance-Based Tools and Actions will focus on the actions available to a supervisor/manager that are designed to increase the performance of an under-performing employee as stipulated by 5 U.S.C. 43.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 129


Lesson 5: Performance-Based Tools and Actions

Lesson Objectives

Page 130

Participant Guide

Learning Points: At the end of this lesson, you will be able to: • Identify appropriate performance-based actions a practitioner can advise a supervisor/manager to take • Identify relevant authorities for the use of performance management

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 5: Performance-Based Tools and Actions

Activity #13: Determine Case Issues

Participant Guide

Learning Points: Divide into pairs and work through the various cases presented on the worksheet on the following page. For each case, identify the core issues at the root of the case.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 131


Lesson 5: Performance-Based Tools and Actions

Participant Guide

Activity: Determine Case Issues Worksheet Instructions: Read through each of the situations in the left column and decide what the central issue is that you could use to look up related case law to support your case against the employee. Be ready to support your decision. Case Description

Central Issue

Susan has been employed by the Federal Government for 5 years. She has always reached an acceptable rating during her performance reviews. Over the past 7 months, she has not been doing as well. Her work has failed to meet deadlines and the quality of work has declined. Her supervisor has attempted to work with her on both her punctuality and the quality of her work. Clients are still concerned with her output and do not like working with her. Bob is about to finish his 23rd year in the Federal Government. It seems that this year he has basically stopped working. He has managed to not take ownership of any project and just fills in as needed. He cannot be counted on to be at his desk when you need him. His supervisor has counseled him on ways that he can change his behavior and finish his career on a strong note. Janet was hired into the Federal Government 18 months ago. From her first mid-year review she has had problems integrating into the office. She does not always adhere to the dress code. There are times when Janet can be heard discussing personal matters on the phone, and she frequently forwards chain e-mails containing questionable content. Her supervisor has tried to encourage Janet to fit into the office culture better, but she just isn’t adapting well. Roger was hired into the Federal Government 7 months ago and is still considered probationary. His wife recently had their first child and he has had increasing difficulty getting to work on time. Even when he is in the office, the quality of his work is low, and he never seems mentally present. The supervisor has tried to be flexible and even pushed Roger’s start time back 30 minutes to accommodate heavy traffic in the area. Despite the 30-minute cushion, Roger continues his habit of tardiness.

Page 132

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 5: Performance-Based Tools and Actions

What Are PerformanceBased Actions?

Participant Guide

Learning Points: Performance-based actions are taken by supervisors/managers against an employee demonstrating marginal or unacceptable levels of performance. Usually, HR Practitioners are involved in the guidance of the supervisor/manager. Less formal performance-based actions include: • Counseling • Coaching • Retraining More formal performance-based actions include: • PIPs • Denial of WGI • Adverse actions

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 133


Lesson 5: Performance-Based Tools and Actions

When Is It Appropriate To Take Action?

Page 134

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • Performance-based actions are taken by a supervisor/manager whenever the performance of one of his or her employees dips into the marginal or unacceptable levels. • Marginal levels of performance allow for less formal actions to be taken by the supervisor. • Unacceptable levels of performance require the supervisor/manager to take formal actions. • “Unacceptable levels of performance” are defined as performance by an employee that fails to meet established performance standards in one or more critical elements of the employee’s position.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 5: Performance-Based Tools and Actions

Probationary Period

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • Most new employees have to go through a probationary or trial period after they are hired. • Probationary periods typically last for the first year of employment. • The probationary period acts as the final and most important step in the hiring process. It allows the supervisor/manager to fully evaluate the employee’s performance. • An employee in a probationary period can be removed without serving the entire period. • An employee terminated during a probationary period has potentially limited appeal rights, depending on his or her status as an employee.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 135


Lesson 5: Performance-Based Tools and Actions

Performance Improvement Period

Page 136

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • The PIP provides an opportunity to formally let an employee know that his or her performance is lacking in certain areas, and to create a plan to improve that performance. • A PIP can be given anytime that the supervisor/manager notices the employee’s performance falling below the required level. It does not matter where in the performance management process the employee is.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 5: Performance-Based Tools and Actions

Guiding the Supervisor/ Manager

Participant Guide

Learning Points: Supervisors/managers will come to you for guidance when they are beginning to write their PIPs. It is your job to help them gather all of the pertinent information. • Identify any previous attempts at correcting the employee’s performance. • Encourage supervisors/managers to refer back to documented incidents that support their claims. • Direct supervisors/managers as to appropriate time frames for improving performance. You need to get accurate and complete information about the situation from the supervisor/manager so that you can offer useful and relevant advice. • Ask direct questions about the nature of the poor performance and the feedback given. • Base any offered advice on the totality of the circumstances. • Suggest formal actions only after informal actions have been attempted.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 137


Lesson 5: Performance-Based Tools and Actions

Included in the PIP

Participant Guide

Learning Points: A PIP is sent out as a written communication between the supervisor/manager and the employee. All PIPs must contain the following information: • Notice of the critical element that is not being met • Support for the decision that the critical element is not being met • Documentation of previous attempts to improve performance • A finite time line in which the employee must improve his or her performance • A reminder of what it will take to successfully complete the critical element • Suggested ways in which the deficiencies can be corrected • Time allotted for improvement in performance • Any specific assistance that will be provided by the supervisor • Consequences if the employee fails to improve his or her performance

Page 138

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 5: Performance-Based Tools and Actions

Duration of the PIP

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • It is up to the supervisor/manager to determine the period of opportunity provided for in the PIP. You should encourage the supervisor/manager to give the employee enough time to actually improve performance. • Typically, periods of opportunity last from 60 to 120 days, depending on the complexity of the element that needs improvement. • Additionally, once the employee improves his or her performance, he or she must maintain that level of performance for 1 year following the beginning of the PIP.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 139


Lesson 5: Performance-Based Tools and Actions

Procedural Requirements

Page 140

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • An agency may restrict the employee’s representative if there is a conflict of interest, unreasonable costs, or priority work assignments that preclude the individual from serving as the representative. • The head of the agency approves the proposal (unless he or she is the proposer). An employee in a higher position than the person who proposed the action must concur with the decision. • To reach the decision whether to reduce-in-grade or remove an employee, the agency considers the employee’s answer and the answer from his representative. • The decision is based only on instances of unacceptable performance during the one-year period ending on the date of the advance notice of proposed action.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 5: Performance-Based Tools and Actions

Denial of WithinGrade Increases

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • Another performance-based action that supervisors/managers can take is a denial of WGI. These are not counted as Chapter 43 actions, but are also used for employees who fail to improve their performance after a PIP. • WGIs will be postponed or delayed in the event of unsatisfactory behavior. If the behavior is improved, the WGI can be granted. If the performance remains unacceptable, the WGI can be withheld. • Supervisors/managers must communicate their intent to deny the WGI in writing.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 141


Lesson 5: Performance-Based Tools and Actions

Process for Denying WGIs

Page 142

Participant Guide

Learning Points: Once the supervisor/manager has determined that he or she will be denying an employee’s WGI, there is a three-step process: 1. Notify the employee in writing of the failure to complete the PIP and the intent to deny his or her WGI. The notice gives reasons for the negative determination and lists areas where the employee must improve in order to be granted a within-grade increase. It also informs the employee of his or her right to request reconsideration of the determination. 2. Allow time for the employee to appeal the decision and request reconsideration. Both sides should provide supporting evidence for their claims. 3. Document the final decision as to the denial of WGI.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 5: Performance-Based Tools and Actions

Reconsideration Of A Negative Determination

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • Employees must submit a request 15 days from receiving the initial determination. • Employees must have a reasonable amount of official time to review materials and prepare a response to the determination. A reasonable amount of official time depends on how complex the job is. • An employee has the right to representation. • The agency must provide the employee with a prompt written final decision.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 143


Lesson 5: Performance-Based Tools and Actions

Continuing Evaluation

Page 144

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • The determination to approve a WGI is based on: o Meeting the appropriate waiting period o Having the most recent rating of record be at an acceptable level of competence, or better • The granting of a WGI requires the issuance of a determination that the employee is demonstrating an “acceptable level of competence” as documented in a current rating, i.e., not more than one year old. • Upon denial of a WGI, supervisors/managers have the flexibility to approve a WGI at any time thereafter once they determine the employee is performing at an acceptable level of competence. However, the agency must consider the employee’s performance at least every 52 weeks after the denial.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 5: Performance-Based Tools and Actions

Activity #14: What’s the Next Step?

Participant Guide

Learning Points: Divide into pairs and work through the various cases presented on the worksheet on the following page. For each case, identify the core issues at the root of the case.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 145


Lesson 5: Performance-Based Tools and Actions

Participant Guide

Activity #14 Scenarios 1. John James, a new supervisor, has set unclear expectations and has a lowperforming employee. He wants to deny the WGI.

2. Chris Schaffer has a low-performing employee who is only 4 weeks away from a WGI. Should she proceed with a PIP or wait for the WGI denial?

3. Carter Hauer is only 2 months away from his appraisal. His performance is low and is now impacting others on the team. His supervisor wants to know if she should proceed with a PIP or wait for the appraisal.

Page 146

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 5: Performance-Based Tools and Actions

Participant Guide

4. Joli’s employee, Bonnie, is on a PIP. According to Joli, Bonnie misses every deadline on the PIP. What information do you need to advise Joli further?

5. Barry was performing at a successful level; however, in the last 4 months, his performance has dropped immensely. The supervisor wants to know if he can withhold the WGI.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 147


Lesson 5: Performance-Based Tools and Actions

Key Points

Page 148

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • Supervisors/managers may not be aware of the actions they can take when dealing with an underperforming employee. • HR Practitioners need to identify the performance-based actions that supervisors/managers may take. • The need for documentation is extremely high whenever performance-based actions are taken.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 5: Performance-Based Tools and Actions

Questions

Participant Guide

What questions do you have about Lesson 5: Performance-Based Tools and Actions? You are ready to begin Lesson 6: Putting It All Together.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 149


Lesson 5: Performance-Based Tools and Actions

Participant Guide

This page intentionally left blank.

Page 150

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 6: Putting It All Together

Participant Guide

Lesson 6: Putting It All Together

Lesson 6: Putting It All Together

Learning Points: • Lesson 6: Putting It All Together will review all of the key points from the course and give you an opportunity to demonstrate everything you have learned from this course.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 151


Lesson 6: Putting it All Together

Lesson Objectives

Page 152

Participant Guide

Learning Points: At the end of this lesson, you will be able to: • Demonstrate the ability to apply course content in a simulation of a year-long performance review cycle • Understand the benefit of using sound performance management techniques

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 6: Putting It All Together

Activity #15: Role-Play

Participant Guide

Instructions: 1. In pairs, decide who will play the role of the supervisor/manager and who will be the HR Practitioner. The purpose of the activity is for HR Practitioners to practice their coaching responsibilities. 2. The Phase 1 red folder contains the profile of a supervisor/manager who is about to enter the planning phase. Role-play based on the contents revealed in this phase. Additional information will follow allowing you to play out an entire review cycle. 3. Upon completing the full review cycle, swap roles and use the contents of the blue folder.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 153


Lesson 6: Putting it All Together

Participant Guide

Summative Activity Scenarios Red Folder Phase 1 Employee Bio: Name: Janice Wage Grade: GS-11 Employee Summary: Janice has always been a middle-of-the-road employee. She never fails to meet a deadline, she shows up on time, and she is generally well regarded around the office. However, Janice will never blow anyone away with her work. She has never received any special recognition for her work — and never really deserved any. She can be described as a time-clock employee: She will punch in, do her work, and then punch out. Supervisor’s Issue: A new performance management cycle is coming up and the supervisor is having trouble devising a performance plan for Janice. The supervisor can’t quite find a way to write the performance objectives in a way that calls for an increase in the quality of work submitted by Janice. Additionally, the supervisor wants to be able to measure and track the output of the team that Janice is on, but doesn’t believe that anything like that can be included in the performance plan.

Phase 2 New Developments: With your help, the supervisor was able to devise a solid performance plan for Janice. A good, measureable objective was created that will encourage her to improve the quality of her work and continue to grow as an employee. Additionally, thanks to the HR Practitioner, the supervisor was able to include a noncritical element that tracked the output of the team. However, the mid-year review is approaching and the supervisor is at a loss. Janice’s performance has not increased all that much, and the supervisor does not know how she will meet the goal. [Additional contents in the folder] •

Page 154

E-mail from a client sent to the supervisor saying: “I recently had the pleasure of reviewing the work that Janice sent us. I know we pushed up the timetable on the project, but I thought we had discussed something with a little more pizzazz to it. Don’t get me wrong, what we have will work excellently, it just wasn’t quite what we’re expecting. I’m looking forward to the future business we’ll conduct. –Your friends at ClientCorp.”

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 6: Putting It All Together

Participant Guide

A promotional flier that is offering various workshops available at the local community college. Classes included are “Managing Expectations,” “Effective Time Management,” “Raising the Bar,” and “Making Good Presentations Great.”

Phase 3 New Developments: The supervisor worked with Janice to create and IDP and even got her to attend some training, including one of the workshops from the flier. Now that the end-of-year meeting is coming up, the supervisor is unsure about not only how to rate Janice, but also how to reward her (if applicable). [Additional Contents in the Folder] • Janice’s self assessment: o “I believe that I was able to meet all of my objectives. After completing the workshops and training we discussed in my IDP, I feel that the quality of my work greatly improved. My contacts at ClientCorp have been overjoyed with my work and cannot stop thanking me for the last item I sent to them. I feel like this is only a start for me, and next year I will be able to improve even further and grow as an employee.” • E-mail from ClientCorp: o “I just wanted to send a quick note about our latest project with Janice. I couldn’t be happier with it. It meets every requirement we had and goes about three steps further. I hope this wasn’t a once-in-a-lifetime type result, because she just managed to raise the bar for everyone. Whatever you’re feeding the employees over there is working; please keep up the great work.”

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 155


Lesson 6: Putting it All Together

Participant Guide

Blue Folder Phase 1 Employee Bio Name: Michael Wage Grade: GS-8 Employee Summary: Michael has frequently been able to produce some outstanding work. The clients cannot stop talking about how much they enjoy what they get from him. Unfortunately, they also can’t stop talking about how unlikely it is for Michael to meet his agreed-upon deadlines. To make matters worse, during these times where he is late, he also becomes increasingly difficult to get hold of. Michael kind of has an eccentric personality that makes him hard to talk to, and typically he has an extreme air of confidence surrounding him. Supervisor Summary: The supervisor is torn. Michael puts out some excellent work, and the clients are very satisfied with what they have received. However, Michael is a liability when it comes to actually producing the work in a timely manner. The supervisor is afraid that if Michael is removed the employer might lose clients — but, at the same time, if Michael isn’t removed he may miss a deadline, and the employer might lose clients. This dilemma has caused the supervisor a lot of heartburn while preparing for the planning meeting. Phase 2 New Developments: Little progress has been made toward the goals outlined in the performance plan. Clients are still happy with the work, but unhappy with the deadlines being missed. Everyone feels like they are being held hostage by Michael’s talents and refusal to abide by deadlines. The supervisor knows that he or she has to offer some coaching to Michael but doesn’t know the best way to go about it. Phase 3 New Developments: The supervisor has offered a number of coaching sessions with Michael throughout the year. Each time Michael agrees that he needs to improve, but doesn’t seem to take any action to do so. The supervisor has set up Outlook reminders for Michael and even offers to check in regularly to help Michael stay on top of his commitments. According to Michael, everything is going great; however, the supervisor has heard differently. The supervisor is still torn as to how to approach the situation. The supervisor needs to come up with a rating for the end-of-year review and wants to know whether to reward Michael or take an adverse action at the end of the cycle.

Page 156

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 6: Putting It All Together

Participant Guide

[Additional Contents in the Folder] • Michael’s self assessment: o “It has been another very successful year. I may not have been able to meet every deadline imposed by the client, but darn if I didn’t wow each and every last one of them with my work. Every last product I submitted resulted in “oohs” and “aahs” from the client. I swear, they all sing my praises so loudly it’s hard to hear my desk phone ring. I can’t think of a way to be more successful than I have been this past year.” • A collection of e-mails forwarded to the supervisor from the client: o “Michael, I just wanted to check in and see how things were going. We sent back our comments from the prototype, but haven’t heard anything yet. Please keep us in the loop. – The Client” o “Michael, despite your silence in reply to our e-mail a week ago, we can only assume that you’re still plugging away. You haven’t disappointed us before, but the time frame for this project is a little abbreviated. We need to know if we can stick to it. – The Client” o “Michael, you were supposed to submit a draft yesterday. Where is it? Where are you?!?” o “Once again, I can’t help but be impressed with the product you’ve provided us. It may be even better than the last one you gave us. However, I can’t help but feel like you are not keeping up all of your side of the bargain. While the 3-day delay isn’t earth-shattering, and we can certainly work around it, we should have received notice. We gave you ample time to complete the project, and even ample time to ask for more time. Even if you gave us 85% of what you did 3 days ago, we would have been ecstatic. Looking forward to working with you again. – The Client”

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 157


Lesson 6: Putting it All Together

Questions

Participant Guide

What questions do you have about Lesson 6: Putting It All Together? You are ready to begin Lesson 7: Course Conclusion.

Page 158

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 7: Course Conclusion

Participant Guide

Lesson 7: Course Conclusion

Lesson 7: Course Conclusion

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 159


Lesson 7: Course Conclusion

Key Learning Points

Page 160

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • You should do your best to support the supervisors/managers in your organization. • Supervisors/managers rely on you to offer guidance as they usher their employees through the performance management process. • You need accurate and complete documentation. • Supervisors/managers look to you for your expertise concerning what actions can be taken with underperforming employees.

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners


Lesson 7: Course Conclusion

Course Evaluation

Participant Guide

Learning Points: • Congratulations, you have completed the Performance Management for HR Practitioners course.

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

September 2011

Page 161


Lesson 7: Course Conclusion

Participant Guide

This page intentionally left blank.

Page 162

September 2011

Performance Management for HR Practitioners

Performance Management for HR Practitioners Participant Guide  

Performance Management for HR Practitioners Participant Guide

Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you