Performance Management - Definition

Performance management is an ongoing process of communication between a supervisor and an employee that occurs throughout the year, in support of accomplishing the strategic objectives of the organization. The communication process includes clarifying expectations, setting objectives, identifying goals, providing feedback, and reviewing results.

Managing Employee Performance – The Cycle

Overseeing performance and providing feedback is not an isolated event, focused in an annual performance review. It is an ongoing process that takes place throughout the year. The Performance Management process is a cycle, with discussions varying year-to-year based on changing objectives.

The cycle includes Planning, Checking-In, and Review.

  • To begin the planning process, you and your employee review overall expectations, which includes collaborating on the development of performance objectives. Individual development goals are also updated. You then develop a performance plan that directs the employee's efforts toward achieving specific results to support organizational excellence and employee success.
  • Goals and objectives are discussed throughout the year, during check-in meetings. This provides a framework to ensure employees achieve results through coaching and mutual feedback.
  • At the end of the performance period, you review the employee's performance against expected objectives, as well as the means used and behaviors demonstrated in achieving those objectives. Together, you establish new objectives for the next performance period.