Performance management is both a science and an art and is critical for companies to master in the competitive domestic and global marketplace.

Performance management and leadership development separate the strongest companies from their competitors, and creating an environment where people can find new ways of motivating themselves is critical to every organization’s success. Stellar leadership starts with effective communication, fairness, respect, and trust. But how do you get there? How can you create an ethical foundation and culture that allow your employees to fall in love with your company? It’s actually not as difficult as you might imagine: Praising good work, delivering constructive feedback (tough conversations), and documenting appropriately increase employee morale and protect your company legally. Below you’ll find specific strategies and tips for motivating your teams, increasing productivity and profitability, and making work fun again.

What All Senior HR Executives Wish Their Front-Line Managers Knew About Effective Leadership

March 7, 2017
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As a leader, you can give your company no greater gift than a motivated, energized and engaged workforce. Spikes in turnover may happen from time to time, but what’s critical is your response, the counsel you seek and your …

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The Leader-As-Coach: 10 Questions You Need to Ask to Develop Employees

March 1, 2017
Leader as Coach

Too many companies spend time and energy tending to the lowest 10 percent of performers via progressive discipline and the like. But don’t neglect your top performers only to find yourself struggling through a counteroffer once someone has given …

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Naming Names: When to Identify Co-Workers in Corrective Action Documentation

December 15, 2016
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Nina is an employee relations manager in a hospital, and she’s faced with a dilemma: A group of employees from one department has come forward to file a complaint against their director for being rude, crass and confrontational. Nina …

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Mix It Up: The Benefits Of Talent Rotation For Leadership Development

April 6, 2016
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Talent rotations can go a long way in improving team performance and communication with internal boundary partners. Rotations are also an excellent form of leadership development because they raise awareness and help emerging leaders gain a stronger grasp of …

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How Often Should You Give Performance Feedback?

December 23, 2015
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For most companies, the overwhelming answer is annually. But as Paul Falcone pointed out in his book 2600 Phrases for Setting Effective Performance Goals (AMACOM 2012) and Paul and Winston Tan recommended in The Performance Appraisal Tool Kit (AMACOM …

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“Stay” Interviews: 6 Practical Questions for Key Employee Retention

February 5, 2015
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The job market is heating up, and many top performers who may feel like they’ve been treading water career-wise since the Great Recession of 2008 began may now sense that the momentum is shifting, and new opportunities are coming …

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Correcting for Grade Inflation on an Employee’s Annual Performance Review

February 3, 2015
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It’s performance review season and time to kick off the New Year with formal staff feedback and goal setting for the upcoming calendar year. But what if you find out that a manager on your team assigned the wrong …

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Staff Motivation: Core Truths about Raising Employee Engagement in the Workplace

November 11, 2014

There are many books and articles available on how to motivate staff without money, how to reinvigorate weary teams in light of the ongoing changes and challenges in our competitive workplace, and how to encourage others with awe-inspiring leadership …

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Three Steps to Great Staff Meetings

November 11, 2014
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Published on SHRM Online. A one-hour team check-in could be the most valuable time investment you make. Be sure to make it count. Opening the lines of communication with your staff begins with healthy group dialogue. The best place

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Letters of Clarification: Between Verbal Coaching and Formal Written Warnings

August 25, 2014
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Published on AMA Playbook – As a manager in corporate America, you’ve no doubt been frustrated at times by employees whose problematic job performance or behavior falls just below the threshold of violating a specific company policy. The Letter …

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Decision-Making Leaves: Dramatic Performance Turnarounds without a Lot of Drama

June 9, 2014
Decision-Making Leaves

One of the greatest workplace challenges to supervisors and managers lies in turning around workers when their conduct or behavior consistently disappoints. A decision-making leave, also known as a “day of contemplation,” could be just what the doctor ordered. …

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Employment-At-Will vs. Progressive Discipline: Understanding the Legal Dichotomy

April 26, 2014
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Why does a company have to offer its employees progressive discipline if they’re already employed at will? As an HR professional, you’ve probably been asked that question a number of times throughout your career, especially when one of your …

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Avoid the Preemptive Strike

March 18, 2014
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One of the challenges about managing people in corporate America is that troubled workers sometimes look to manipulate a company’s Human Resources (HR) department to their advantage. Workers are very sophisticated consumers, and whether they figure this out on …

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Ten Practical and “Street-Smart” Rules for Conducting Internal Workplace Investigations

December 18, 2013
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There are a number of important strategies for conducting effective workplace investigations. Unfortunately many organizations lose sight of the fundamentals before moving to termination, only to learn in the post-termination litigation process that they failed to conduct a thorough …

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Helping Managers Agree Upon How to Score Employee Performance

November 29, 2013
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Unfortunately there’s no magic bullet that distinguishes a performance review scoring of a 5 from a 4 or a 3 from a 2, for example. What’s important, however, is that leaders within each division and/or department and across divisions …

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Paul’s Interview with Mary Ellen Slater, Senior Editor of Smart Brief

June 18, 2013

Watch Paul’s interview with SHRM’s Mary Ellen Slater, senior editor of Smart Brief on 101 Tough Conversations to Have with Employees. Paul addresses the factors that commonly prevent effective addressing of issues with employees such as avoidance, guilt-oriented communication, …

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Podcast for The Proactive Employer: ”Unleashing the Power of Performance”

June 17, 2013
Paul and co-author, Winston Tan offer this helpful podcast related to their recent book, The Performance Appraisal Tool Kit, published by AMACOM Books.
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