Developing Your Career

Don’t Leave Employees Guessing – Talk to Them About Their Performance

By Kristen Leverone on October 2, 2012

Are you talking to your employees on a regular basis about their performance?  According to a recent LHH survey, more than half of employees reported that their managers rarely or never take an interest in helping them develop in their roles – leaving them in the dark and left guessing about what they are doing well, where they need to improve,  if and how they are adding value, the impact of their contributions, or what career opportunities exist within the organization.

What’s at risk?  Without this active support, organizations are probably not getting the best work from employees and nor will they get the “above and beyond” behaviors that are critical to success.  Failing to recognize the importance of career conversations will lead to lower levels of engagement and lackluster performance.  And, when your high performers feel their managers are not interested in them, they can – and will – leave.  They want to know that their organization is interested in making an investment in them and that their contributions are making a positive impact. They also seek clear paths for advancement.

How can managers get better at having career conversations? Make them frequent and meaningful. Avoid rolling career development discussions into annual performance reviews. Managers should look for opportunities to integrate career conversations into what they do on a frequent basis instead of just addressing it once a year. It can be a 10 minute conversation once a week. These discussions aren’t just about how an employee is performing in his or her job today, but should include developmental coaching, assessment of skills needed within the organization for tomorrow and beyond, opportunities for growth and a practical path for advancement.

 

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