PS Reviews: Jim Barnett’s Article on Empowering Managers to Engage Employees
In the recent Thrive Global article, “Empowering Managers Is the Secret to Engaged Employees,” Jim Barnett discusses the increased importance of management with the modern workforce and offers three tips to empower managers at a business. Employee engagement and development have been hot-topics for years now, but Barnett examines the primary driving factor behind the scenes. “Managers are essential to the employee experience,” he begins, “when they are empowered with skills and data, good managers take feedback from their team, examine it for strengths and opportunities, and then lead conversations that drive meaningful action.” Performance Scoring is empowering managers with its performance management system capturing objective data on employee performance and its reporting features to direct managers where and how to engage their employees. We believe the strategies to empower managers that Barnett offers are all accomplished directly with a tool in place like Performance Scoring.
“Tackle skill gaps head-on”
The hot-topic of employee engagement is typically followed closely by an acknowledgement of the increasing skills gap in the workforce. “Between a strong job market and the growing skills gap, companies are in constant competition for the workers and skill sets that will future-proof their business,” recognizes Barnett. A business trying to attract the top talent will exist into perpetuity, but “future-proofing” a business also happens from within by empowering managers. With a focus on employee development “employers can bridge the gap by cultivating the people already within their organizations.” Whether it be development or engagement of employees, management is the starting point, and ultimately they are ones that set the pace. Performance Scoring will take a team or individual’s developmental goals and measure them by the factors that contribute to success and achievement over time. “Ensuring managers have access to frequent feedback and insights that help them identify the biggest opportunities for their team and its individuals and the resources to help their team act on those opportunities through learning and development programs.” Continuous feedback systems, like Performance Scoring, inform relevant parties in real-time where the opportunities for growth and development are.
“Embrace the power of open conversation”
The point that Barnett makes of embracing open conversation is the most important tip to truly reaching a point of organic employee engagement. “Creating a culture of open conversation empowers managers to have a more skillful, meaningful, and impactful dialogue around feedback and performance,” endorses Barnett. So many businesses accept this as a priority, but don’t know how to start. The starting point to empowering managers is with technology and a performance management tool, like Performance Scoring. Barnett points out that “feedback and performance discussions between managers and their teams need to be frequent and flexible.” One of the ancillary benefits of Performance Scoring is that when employees receive performance feedback in real-time (and know the factors to improve their performance) they can take ownership and seek coaching or training. “This framework for continuous feedback encourages managers and employees to share feedback and address issues before they spiral into major problems,” writes Barnett. This alludes to the return business sees in being proactive about performance challenges. In fact, Performance Scoring’s clients have experienced returns as high as 20x from using our system to prevent performance issues and develop employees.
“Give managers the tools to take action”
Engagement and development ultimately start with management, and so many businesses approach this with methods that are well outdated. “Whether it’s a lack of time, data, or clarity on what to do next, many managers lack the tools and support they need to effectively identify actions that will positively contribute to team performance, development, and innovation.” Performance Scoring was developed to be the system that ties it all together. A continuous feedback system that captures performance data, and reporting features that clearly displays areas of high performance and those where engagement and coaching is needed. We are empowering managers by providing new and actionable data, and objectively clarifying where to focus resources to develop their teams. Barnett mentions in closing that “it’s important to focus on action taking over action planning.” The performance metrics of Performance Scoring empower managers to measure what they know leads to success at each company role, and take action when factors occur that are inhibiting that success. Anyone that agrees with the importance of employee engagement is also in agreement that “investing in the manager has never been more important.” Performance Scoring is an investment into empowering managers, engaging and developing employees, and future-proofing a company for success now and in the years to come.