1) Organizations need to communicate to everyone that accountability and commitment are important. This provides an opportunity to analyze your communication system.
2) Align every job description to your company’s strategy and goals for the coming year. Ask everyone to commit to a shared vision of results. Annual strategic planning will keep you on track with this step.
3) Make accountabilities clear for everyone by using the benchmark for their job to start a discussion about how their individual contributions matter. Incorporate this strategy into your hiring system.
4) Have job-related professional development planning in place for new employees. This will help them reach their full potential consistently and more quickly.
5) Build accountability into your company culture using “what and by when” goal and task planning. Project management can be very sophisticated, but the bottom line is “who, what, and by when?” Having simple project management tools in place will work wonders for this step.
6) Offer ways for employees to communicate obstacles and request the help or resources they need to achieve their goals. When you listen to them, recognize that what you’re listening to is someone who is committed to producing results.
7) Involve employees in an ongoing dialogue about how they can identify process improvements or otherwise increase the quality of their work and the team’s productivity. A great way to do this is through brainstorming sessions. These can be fun and productive!
8) Use small “course corrections” on a monthly or as-needed basis to guide employees toward behaviors and practices that are effective for meeting goals. Don’t wait for the annual performance review. You wouldn’t wait until arrival at a destination to notice a wrong turn along the way, would you? Always build in check points on every project to help eliminate processes and components from falling through the cracks.
9) “Catch” people doing something right: Give frequent, honest and positive feedback. As a general rule of thumb, a ratio of five positive interactions to one critical interaction will help managers build an open communication channel with direct reports. A true performance system involves constant feedback.
10) Identify ways to recognize and acknowledge employees company-wide when their actions exemplify an “above and beyond” commitment to company objectives. Success breeds success!