At Anoka Technical College we believe performance management promotes a working culture where employees can live and learn well. Performance management is a systems approach to supervising.
The first step in performance management is a well-defined position description (PD). The PD should accurately reflect the work the employee is expected to perform and the skills and abilities necessary to accomplish position responsibilities. Supervisors must evaluate employee position descriptions regularly to ensure that performance expectations and essential job requirements are clearly documented and communicated.
The second step is supervisor diligence during the employee probationary period. Research shows that employees are on their best behavior during their first six months of work. Ignoring problems during this critical time will most assuredly lead to bigger problems later. In accordance with the AFSCME collective bargaining agreement supervisors shall conduct at least one probationary evaluation at the approximate mid-point of the probationary period. Anoka Tech encourages all supervisors to conduct a mid-point evaluation for all employees, not just AFSCME employees, because evaluations create an arena for comparing job expectations and employee performance. Sometimes, despite all the preliminary work that is done during the hiring process, the selected candidate is not a good fit for the position. Discovering a mismatch during the probationary period is better for the employee and for the organization because, the long term cost to the well being of both is negatively impacted when an individual is in the wrong position. It should never be a surprise to a probationary employee if they are not certified as a permanent employee!
The third step is performance evaluation. Informal evaluations throughout the year help employees know how they are doing and where they need to improve. An annual performance evaluation acts as a formal tool to communicate accolades, expectations and places for improvement. During the evaluation, supervisors and employees review outcomes from the previous years' goals and develop goals for the next year. Please review the performance evaluation piece of this supervisor's toolkit for more details.
Finally, progressive discipline is a tool designed to correct employee behavior so that misconduct does not occur or is not repeated. It is not intended to punish. Progressive discipline begins with a supervisor clearly communicating expectations and essential job requirements.