© Copyright Carter McNamara, MBA, Ph.D., Authenticity Consulting, LLC. Adapted
from the Field Guide to Leadership and Supervision in Business and
Field Guide to Leadership and Supervision for Nonprofit Staff.
Strongly Suggested Pre-Reading
Approaches to Development Planning
Remember that information in this section is generic to performance management,
that is, the information generally applies to any domain of performance management,
including an organization, an internal and recurring process, a team or an employee.
The development planning phase generally occurs after the Performance
Appraisal phase. Keep in mind that the three phases (performance planning,
performance appraisal and development planning) are all cyclical and highly integrated in nature. As in our descriptions of the performance planning and performance
appraisal phases, we will continue with our example of the machine operator.
So at this point in our example, a performance plan and the performance appraisal
activities have already been conducted for the operator.
13. If performance does not meet desired performance standards, develop
or update a performance development plan to address the performance gap*
(See Notes 1 and 2 below.)
If performance does not meet standards, implement a performance development
plan. This plan clearly conveys how the conclusion was made that there
was inadequate performance, what actions are to be taken and by whom and when,
when performance will be reviewed again and how. In our example, if the operator
(or other domain) was not performing to standards, then some forms of help (or
interventions) should be provided (in this example, coaching, mentoring, training,
more resources, etc).
- In a progressive
approach, performance development can occur in real time, that is, the
supervisor and operator would address performance issues as soon as they occur.
The supervisor and operator would collaborate to decide what improvements
are needed and how they might be implemented. Their decisions and any documentation
would include any decisions about additional trainings that might be needed
and how they could advance the operator’s career.
* Note 1: Inadequate performance does not always indicate a
problem on the part of the domain. Performance standards may be
unrealistic or the domain may have insufficient resources. Similarly,
the overall strategies or the organization, or its means to achieving
its top-level goals, may be unrealistic or without sufficient
* Note 2: When performance management is applied to an employee
or group of employees, a development plan can be initiated in
a variety of situations, e.g.,:
a.) When a performance appraisal indicates performance improvement
b.) To “benchmark” the status of improvement so far
in a development effort
c.) As part of a professional development for the employee or
group of employees, in which case there is not a performance gap
as much as an “growth gap”
d.) As part of succession planning to help an employee be eligible
for a planned change in role in the organization, in which case
there also is not a performance gap as much as an “opportunity
e.) To “pilot”, or test, the operation of a new performance
14. Repeat steps 9 to 13 until performance is acceptable, standards are
changed, the domain is replaced, management decides to do nothing, etc.
Learn More in the Library’s Blogs Related to Performance Management
In addition to the articles on this current page, see the following blogs which
have posts related to Performance Management. Scan down the blog’s page to see
various posts. Also see the section “Recent Blog Posts” in the sidebar
of the blog or click on “next” near the bottom of a post in the blog.
For the Category of Performance Management:
To round out your knowledge of this Library topic, you may want to review some
related topics, available from the link below. Each of the related topics includes
free, online resources.
Also, scan the Recommended Books listed below. They have been selected for their
relevance and highly practical nature.