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Objective evidence of the behaviours that matter

 Managers in businesses around the world assess the performance of their colleagues. Explicitly, most do this at least once a year in preparation for the annual appraisal meeting. Implicitly, managers assess performance every single day, making judgements about the quality of work produced, the interactions with customers and colleagues and the meeting of key performance indicators. All these single judgements add up to an overall assessment of how a colleague has performed throughout the year, and it is important that they are shared with colleagues, at minimum in the annual appraisal conversation and ideally much more regularly in 1-1 meetings.

L&D and HR professionals know the importance of ensuring that these many judgements are backed up by evidence. It’s easy for managers to back up their judgements with evidence when it comes to the tangible deliverables of a job such as whether a deadline has been met, a target has been hit or a case file has been completed accurately. But what about backing up the less tangible elements that contribute to a colleague’s performance, such as how they work with their team-mates, how they speak to customers or how proactively they move projects forward?

Often, these judgements are subjective, based on opinion rather than fact, even though these elements of performance are just as important as the deliverables, or sometimes even more so. At a recent leadership conference in the North East, John Morewood, Head of Emerging Talent in Europe for HSBC Bank plc explained that HSBC is in fact putting these less tangible, what they describe as ‘role model’ elements, high on the agenda in all performance-related conversations.

So when it comes to having regular or annual performance conversations, how do you turn that subjective opinion of how a colleague is contributing to the objectives of the business into an objective assessment of the practical behaviours and qualities that matter? Is it enough to feed back to a colleague that you thought they were friendly/abrupt/loud/sympathetic/angry (delete as applicable!) on the phone, or that it’s not acceptable to point at another colleague, or that you need them to be more creative in the future? At Aspire, we think not. Colleagues need to understand what behaviours matter and why they matter, and to be supported and developed so they can demonstrate, or as HSBC would say, “role-model” them.

Increasingly, we’re seeing the use of 360 Degree Profiling and Feedback tools being used during the appraisal process to provide that objective evidence of the behaviours that matter. Appreciating the impact that everyday behaviours have on colleagues, managers, customers and peers can help a colleague to understand why those behaviours matter. Through the use of good quality 360 Degree Profiling & Feedback platforms and programmes, managers in the business, along with L&D and HR professionals can confidently rely on solid data to provide a practical and objective assessment of performance, highlighting the benefits these people are bringing to their employer’s business through the way they work, as well identifying areas for development.

At Aspire, we’ve been at the front line of learning and development for over ten years, and we know the value of a high quality 360 Degree Profiling & Feedback programme. That’s why we’ve spent months developing an online 360 Degree Profiling & Feedback Tool for L&D and HR professionals to use – without the need for accreditation. Since the launch of our generic online tool, we’ve been overwhelmed by the level of interest from L&D and HR professionals in our products and demand for our 360 Degree Profiling & Feedback tools. We appreciate that every business is different, and to take things to the next level we’ve introduced our Tailored 360 Degree Profiling & Feedback, allowing businesses to clearly benchmark, analyse and evaluate colleagues’ performance against the skills and qualities that matter most in their business.

Using a 360 Degree Profiling and Feedback and tool can facilitate performance conversations at any level in the business, ensuring that colleagues understand the skills and qualities that matter, can develop in line with business objectives, vision and values, and importantly deliver performance that provides tangible benefits to customers, colleagues and the business.

For more information about Aspire’s suite of online 360 Degree Profiling & Feedback tools, click here.

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