Beyond as Usual – Performance Management to Improve Results and Employee Engagement

The impact of talent shortages, declining productivity and low employee engagement on results is on the radar of most business leaders. In 2023, global talent scarcity reached a new high at 77% (up- from 36% in 2014) - Global Talent Shortage report (ManpowerGroup). Gallup estimates that low employee engagement cost up to 9% of global GDP (about $8.8 trillion) in 2023.

In response, talent optimization (aligning talent bench with business priorities and enabling employee’s best performance) is increasingly a core imperative for leading businesses. This is driving a shift to recognize that employee performance management is a critical component of strategy.

Every employee is looking for opportunities to be their own best self and to grow. Employees seek and are empowered by places where they belong, can contribute, and do the kind of work that is reinforcing and empowering rather than depleting. Individuals want to know whether they are ‘doing well’ and want to know early so that they can close gaps and improve performance.

Businesses can adopt the Objectives and Key Results (OKRs) approach, which must be reviewed frequently, enabling employees to reflect and score their own objectives and result accomplishment and discuss with team leads/supervisors. Employee promotions, rewards, compensation, bonuses, training plan and skills development should be based on objective insights from business, team and individual OKR performance over the period and avoid surprises.

Performance management is core to maintaining employee engagement and driving conversations that emphasise the development of employees' skills, knowledge, behaviour, and alignment with strategic objectives in the pursuit of results.