Employees don’t leave companies, they leave toxic workplaces.
We’ve all heard the term “The Great Resignation”. One common reason why employees are quitting is because of office politics – precisely a lack of respect in the workplace.
In order to retain top talent and create a high-performance culture, it’s important to establish a work environment that is positive, productive, and supportive.
By establishing a set of standards and expectations that employees are held accountable to, you can create an environment where everyone is working towards the same goal.
This article discusses the steps to establish a high-performance culture in your workplace.
1. Define what success looks like
Before you can establish a high-performance culture, you need to know what success looks like for your business. What are your goals and objectives? What are your KPIs? Will your team require project management training courses?
Success looks different for each company. Define it. Then, start putting together a plan to achieve it.
Startups mainly define growth as success. Most of them believe success is securing an additional round of investment in the startup. Getting more investment only to burn them – without developing a culture where profitability is the key – is not success.
Success is growing in a sustainable manner. In 2020, many technology companies received rounds of investment and started hiring aggressively. However, in 2022, as the market slowed down, they had to lay off employees. Companies had anticipated a higher growth than what the market turned out to offer.
Growing the headcount was a matter of success for them. Instead they should have focused on building a culture that focused on profitability and sustainability.
2. Communicate, communicate, communicate
Once you know what success looks like, it’s time to communicate your vision to your team. Let them know what the goals are and why they’re important.
Be clear and concise in your communication. Employees should be able to understand the vision and how their work fits into it.
In order to keep everyone on the same page, it’s important to communicate often and effectively. When goals or objectives change, make sure that everyone is aware of the new game plan. If there are concerns or issues, address them head-on so that they can be resolved quickly and efficiently.
3. Have a performance management system
When applying for jobs, employees are given a lucrative job description and attractive company profile videos which promises performance-based bonuses. Monetary benefits are a motivating factor for employees to switch jobs.
As a result, when employees join workplaces they expect a KPI-based bonus, even though they might not ask for it.
Companies need to have a proper system to keep up to the initial promises made during hiring. Leapsome’s performance management system allows automation of people management. The system helps in creating agile processes for managing the employee performances.
Using a performance management system means leaving the conventional methods of sending out forms and maintaining KPIs on spreadsheets. Have all the components of performance management in a single, consolidated space.
4. Celebrate successes
When your team hits a goal, take the time to acknowledge their hard work. Everyone should be motivated and focused on the task at hand.
Make sure everyone knows when milestones are hit – big or small. A positive reinforcement will only bring the company culture up.
If someone is not meeting the standards, take action to correct the problem so that it doesn’t continue happening in the future.
5. Managing rewards of those who meet (and exceed) expectations
One of the best ways to motivate employees is to reward those who meet (and exceed) expectations. This could be in the form of bonuses, paid time off, health insurance or other perks such as wellness allowance, gym allowance or travel allowance and benefits.
Whatever you decide, make sure that it’s something that will motivate employees to continue doing their best work. Reward management is all about coming up with a mutually beneficial way of keeping both the employees and the company stakeholders happy.
Remember, reward management should not focus only on the top performers. Those who just meet expectations should also be acknowledged for their efforts. This will help create a culture of respect and appreciation.
Motivation is an important driving factor for every individual. If the company’s vision and the employee’s goals are not in sync, it will only lead to disappointment on both sides.
6. Set the expectation that everyone is a contributor
In a high-performance culture, everyone is expected to contribute and do their part. This means that even the most entry-level employees have a role to play in achieving company goals. Establishing this expectation early on will help ensure that everyone is working towards the same goal.
No team member should feel like they aren’t good enough. When given the right motivation, even a low performer can achieve their goals.
Managers should be leaders. Not bosses. Bosses dump most of the work on employees. Leaders don’t. They contribute equally to a project or lead from the front by doing more work. This way employees don’t get the feeling that they are being overworked. The expectation is set that we’re all in this together.
7. Hire the right people
Hunt for individuals who share your vision and values. Look for a person’s passion to learn and grow. If a potential candidate has the drive to excel, then it’s worth investing in the employee even if they have little experience.
Hire people who are passionate about their work and who are willing to go the extra mile. It might take longer to hunt the right people. However, finding them is essential because you can’t build a high-performance culture with negative-minded people in the workplace. You can do this more efficiently by outsourcing your recruitment process to companies run by people that understand the importance of creating and maintaining a healthy company culture.
8. Hold people accountable to the standards you’ve set
It’s not enough to just set the standards; you also need to hold people accountable to them. This means having regular check-ins and performance reviews to ensure that everyone is meeting their obligations.
Create an environment where approaching higher management is not discouraged. An atmosphere where hierarchy is left to a minimum.
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Employees should be able to resolve their issues without feeling hesitant toward approaching their managers.
9. Get regular feedback
Encourage employees to give feedback, both positive and negative. The most important aspect of a high-performance culture is identifying areas that need improvement and pinpoint areas where your team is excelling.
Make sure employees feel comfortable giving feedback and that their suggestions are actually being implemented. It is not possible to implement all suggestions. However, just giving an option to the employees that their voices are being heard is sufficient enough to make them feel valued.
Employees remain loyal to workplaces as long as they know they’re being respected and fairly treated. No amount of compensation can ever match the feeling of being valued.
10. Promote from within
When possible, promote from within. This will show employees that there are opportunities for advancement and that their hard work is being recognized.
If you hire people at higher positions from other companies, they will have a lesser importance of the role than a person who has earned their position through years of dedication to the company.
Instead of hiring employees at managerial positions, hire people at a lower experience level and train them to become managers. Usually people with lesser experience are motivated and they get the job done when they are trusted. This doesn’t mean that you stop hiring people with experience, but means giving more opportunities to those within the company.
Which one is the most important step to establishing a high-performance culture
Creating a high-performance culture at work can be challenging, but it’s well worth the effort. By following these steps, you can establish a set of standards and expectations that everyone in your organization will be held accountable to. Doing so will lead to better employee satisfaction and motivation, which will ultimately benefit your business.
If you want to establish a high-performance culture, make sure you’re hiring the right people.
With clear communication and frequent check-ins, you can ensure that everyone is working towards the same goal. In addition, reward those who go above and beyond.
Encourage employees to never stop learning. Remember a high-performance culture is one where employees are constantly looking for ways to improve their skill set. Finally, don’t forget to celebrate successes along the way.