The financial year is over and in many organisations performance appraisals are about to begin. The stakes are high, recognition, remuneration and promotions are just some of the things that hinge on what I call the “what’s”.
What were your accomplishments and what was the business impact? What improvements or solutions have you delivered this year? What have you done to challenge the status quo? What, what, what…
But with so many “what’s”, which “what’s” matter most?
What Have You Done To Serve And Support Our Customers?
Its no coincidence that many of best organisations exist to make the lives of a group of people (often their customers) better and their visions and missions reflect this.
Whether it is Amazon who seek “to be the Earth’s most customer centric company”, Facebook who “give people the power to build community and bring the world closer together” or Sony who exist to “inspire and fulfil your curiosity”, customer centric visions and missions keep organisations and their employees pointed to what matters – the customer.
As leaders, the most important thing you can do is to measure people’s performance against the vision or mission that you set, specifically their contribution to achieving that vision or mission.
What Have You Done To Serve And Support Your Colleagues?
In serving customers and delivering against the vision and mission, everyone needs to pull together. Employees need to connect, communicate and collaborate. Through collaboration comes creativity, the fuel that enables organisations to deliver great and enduring work.
In the age of the resurgent entrepreneur one of the biggest misconceptions that exists today is that amazing pieces of work happen in solitude. This is simply not true. Henry Ford once said, “coming together is a beginning; keeping together is progress; working together is success”.
Ford knew all to well he couldn’t do it alone and James Couzens, Albert Kahn, his own son Edsil, as well as thousands of others worked together to change the way we live forever.
Why Are The “What’s” So Important?
The reason getting this right is so important is that it cuts at the very fabric of organisational culture. Organisational culture is the shared values, behaviours and beliefs of the people within an organisation, and it is through recognition, remuneration and promotions that culture is reflected and validated.
I would challenge all leaders to consider are the what’s you appraise reflective of the culture you want?