How can HR Modify Performance Management Systems for Employee Well-Being?


    How can HR Modify Performance Management Systems for Employee Well-Being?

    In the quest to align performance management with employee well-being, we've gathered insights from top executives, including a CEO and President who emphasizes the need to adopt a personalized review strategy. Alongside expert opinions, we present additional answers that contribute to a holistic approach to nurturing mental health in the workplace. From the integration of mental health days to the prioritization of resilience training, discover how leaders are reshaping performance evaluations to support their teams.

    • Adopt a Personalized Review Strategy
    • Foster Collaborative Goal Setting
    • Rename for Positive Perception
    • Incorporate Well-Being into Criteria
    • Implement Anonymous Feedback Systems
    • Schedule Wellness-Oriented Check-Ins
    • Integrate Mental Health Days
    • Prioritize Resilience Training

    Adopt a Personalized Review Strategy

    My initial performance management system was fairly typical. I kept reviews regular and sterile: once a month and nothing personal.

    My assumption was that consistency was best, but over the years, I've rethought this approach.

    Employees aren't robots, and managing them this way was actually quite alienating. They felt like cogs in the machine, treated similarly to non-tangible systems like networks or databases.

    Once I realized this, I shifted to a more casual strategy.

    For starters, I now issue reviews when they're appropriate instead of every month. For some workers, that means more often; for others, less. It's about the contract they're on, the amount of work on their plate, and their personality, too.

    Secondly, I began taking into account their lives outside the office. If someone was going through something at home, that became a factor in my performance management style. I paid attention to the entire human, in other words.

    The result was a better-supported and more connected workforce.

    Rob Reeves
    Rob ReevesCEO and President, Redfish Technology

    Foster Collaborative Goal Setting

    Instead of having a one-way goal-setting system (dictated by the leadership or the employee being asked to list goals proclaimed to 'make or break' their performance review), a collaborative approach in performance expectation and management is much better. This includes asking employees what kind of work style they are more comfortable with, whether they prefer guided management or have more autonomy over their roles, and simply asking them how to feel better supported in the company. This allows the employees to feel more at ease in initiating projects and making them happen effectively in the most resourceful manner due to the lifted stress from chasing numbers just for the sake of scoring high on a performance review. This doesn't work for all departments, especially ones that are sales-dependent or product development where deadlines are imperative, but it works for most sides of the business.

    Jamie Frew
    Jamie FrewCEO, Carepatron

    Rename for Positive Perception

    Names carry a lot of power.

    And while it might feel natural to refer to your performance management system as exactly that, keep in mind the title strikes fear in some employees.

    Continuous and constant evaluation is a scary concept for workers, who inevitably assume they'll be singled out and corrected regularly.

    Convincing them that it's actually a tool of encouragement and improvement, rather than control, starts with giving it a name that reflects the full range of strategy and protocols involved.

    At Bemana, we renamed our system 'Objective Success,' and found the shift in wording helped workers see it for the beneficial program it is.

    Linn Atiyeh
    Linn AtiyehCEO, Bemana

    Incorporate Well-Being into Criteria

    To enhance employee well-being, a human resources manager can modify performance management systems by adopting flexible criteria that focus on employees' mental and emotional welfare. Such metrics should assess not just the quantity of work done but also the quality of work-life balance each employee achieves. Additionally, incorporating factors like teamwork and innovation can create a more holistic picture of employee performance.

    This approach shifts the emphasis from traditional productivity measures to a broader view that values employee satisfaction and overall well-being. Consider reshaping your company's performance criteria to nurture a more balanced work environment.

    Implement Anonymous Feedback Systems

    A human resources manager can improve transparency and trust within the organization by implementing a system for anonymous feedback. Allowing employees to express concerns and suggestions without fear of repercussions can lead to insightful improvements in both performance and workplace morale. Anonymous channels encourage open communication and can reveal areas where support is needed for employee well-being that may not surface in a non-confidential setting.

    By ensuring voices are heard confidentially, a manager can foster a culture of honesty and continuous improvement. Evaluate your feedback procedures and find ways to incorporate anonymity where it can drive positive change.

    Schedule Wellness-Oriented Check-Ins

    Human resources managers should consider offering regularly scheduled wellness-oriented check-ins to support individual employee well-being. Such check-ins could provide a dedicated time to discuss not only job performance but also personal factors impacting work, such as stress and work-life balance. This practice demonstrates organizational care for employee wellness and can lead to early intervention in matters impacting mental health.

    It also strengthens the employer-employee relationship by showing genuine interest in the person behind the job title. Schedule regular one-on-one meetings to maintain a pulse on your team's wellness and address concerns proactively.

    Integrate Mental Health Days

    In the spirit of supporting overall health, integrating mental health days into performance evaluations can be transformative. By recognizing mental health as a legitimate aspect of employee well-being, managers can destigmatize the need for rest and recuperation. Employees who feel that their mental well-being is valued are more likely to be engaged and productive.

    This integration can serve as a reminder that taking time to recover mentally is as important as physical health in sustaining high performance. Begin the conversation about mental health in your performance management and consider how to incorporate mental health days effectively.

    Prioritize Resilience Training

    Building resilience and adaptability is key to a supportive work environment, so providing training in these areas can be a significant aspect of modified performance management systems. Empowering employees with skills to handle change and bounce back from challenges can reduce workplace stress and improve well-being.

    Facilitating such training signifies an investment in the workforce that goes beyond the immediate job duties, contributing to personal growth and a more dynamic work culture. Encourage a learning mindset within your organization by prioritizing training that focuses on developing resilience and flexibility.