The Perfromance Improvement Loop

Education and development are a critical part of organizational growth and performance. It is part of the fuel that propels progress. Quality training not only teaches employees how to excel in their jobs, but it also increases employee engagement, develops camaraderie, and increases employee motivation (Michelli, 2007). The CEO of 3M James McNerney states, “if I can get people as individuals growing, than I’ve got a company that’s growing”. The basis of organizational learning is quite simple in that companies only grow via the people within them. With this truth, leaders at all levels must accept the inherent responsibility of training the workforce and managing performance improvement. Yet, before performance at any level can be managed, clear structures and expectations must be communicated.

To establish this structure, a training and development assessment can be completed for an organization. This assessment is a study of the developmental needs based in three distinct areas of potential growth: personal needs, job function needs, and organizational needs. Each of these areas is unique, and should be considered and structured separately as part of an overarching development plan for the staff. A note to consider at this point is that training may not stop exclusively for many organizations with its employees. Often training can be extended and assessed beyond the walls of a company to its customers, volunteers, or suppliers. It can be quite beneficial for organizations to extend development assessment to their customers or volunteer base. You may find a very worthy investment in training up these other constituent areas.

The training and development assessment is explored with an ultimate goal of increasing employee performance. Because of this performance goal, there are four distinct steps involved in the overall improvement process. First, training and development assessments must be made based on  personal, job function, and organizational needs. Secondly, objectives for performance improvement should be defined based upon this assessment, and any other performance improvement data collected. Third, educational plans for employees must be drawn that are directly linked to organizational learning objectives from the assessments. Finally, regular feedback should be collected and another assessment should done at one years time to quantify the level of performance improvement and reveal areas for further development. These four steps make up the critical performance improvement loop. Asses, create objectives, educate, and survey feedback.

More from Dr. Joseph Michelli here

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