Myths of High Performance

Rick Tate and Julie White Ph.D.

Senior Managing Partners, Impact Achievement Group, Inc.

Creating high performance cultures within a performance management system has been the aspiration of organizations year after year. While the desire is always paramount - the actual realization of such a culture often remains elusive. During our 30 years of consulting to a wide variety of organizations - large and small - we have noticed where many companies and managers put their efforts to influence high performance.

Do these Resonate With You?

  • Clear expectations
  • Well-defined standards—quantitative or qualitative
  • Stretch goals
  • Formal feedback on performance
  • Annual performance appraisals

Hours and hours of training and execution are dedicated to these issues. Unseemly amounts of time and effort go into this process during the course of a year. And yet we still don’t capture the elusive sustained high performance culture we desire.

While clear expectations, goals, feedback and performance appraisals are obvious prerequisites - by themselves they do little to sustain monthly overachievement performance.

We continue to observe that even when these elements are in place, managers simply don’t manage effectively - letting things happen, reacting after the fact, and being overly permissive and tolerant when it comes to performance failure.

The pure business translation of these unfortunate poor business outcomes is a clinical fact---teams and organizations’ Human Capital effectiveness/performance capability levels are less than 35%.

Coupling the above with the absence of a routine cadence of maintaining High Human Capital Performance Capability Levels by managers - we call it “under-management and lack of leadership” - are the dependent variables that lead to performance cultures that settle for mediocrity and never catch excellence on a sustaining monthly basis.

This routine cadence of Human Capital effectiveness and performance capability management that leads to the exceptional execution of goals, plans, and strategy is the most needed and required process in the workplace. When you are not performing at this capability level you create an execution gap which is a terminal illness for many organizations—the gap between what is expected and what is actually delivered.

We can cite 4 specifics - when put into action by managers, tend to drive performance in an upward spiral:

  • Define exactly what you want as a definitive result or outcome. More often than not, we observe employees being held accountable for activities or tasks—albeit important to do—while true performance results are not achieved. We call these key performance results “lag indicators. ‟ These types of indicators are what should be evaluated on a performance appraisal.

  • Identify the key Human Capital performance success and behavior factors that will critically influence the overachievement of the “lag indicators.” (business objectives) We call these "leading edge performance indicators". These are the priority and mandated responsibilities where employees should be spending the majority of their time mastering them and are the targeted coaching areas for managers

  • Create a portal where both manager and employee have visible access to progress against the “leading edge performance indicators.” (success factors) This is the scorecard that should be updated routinely so everyone knows the score—where he or she stands. Like sports—there should be no surprises to the team member or the manager at any time regarding how well they are performing against the desired result.

  • Demand This is a required and frequent progress report initiated by the employee that illuminates how well he or she is doing, where he or she stands regarding the achievement of the “leading (within a High Performance Culture) and lagging performance indicators”, what problems have been encountered, and what responses he or she has taken since the last progress report.

We are often amused how some employees see an excellence in execution model as micromanagement. We see it as prudent. In any high performing company and system there is a routine personal accounting for commitments. This will not happen without managers giving themselves permission to lead versus manage— while becoming the catalyst for driving constant overachievement monthly performance in their organization.

Pinnacle Solutions’ patented Performance Quotient Tool (PQ) is the blueprint that creates High Performance Cultures.

Within this culture the PQ is the only tool in the USA that equips its customers with the unique capability of pivoting from the 80/20 rule (20% A+B performers) to the 20/80 principle (80% A+B performers) which is the foundation for ongoing monthly overachievement of performance and results.

This crucial goal is accomplished by building a tailored “Overachievement Performance Desired Results Model”. The model identifies the key Human Capital performance parameters and behaviors that critically influence the overachievement of a company’s planned business and financial objectives.” We call these “leading edge performance indicators.” These are the priority and mandated responsibilities that team members must master and are the targeted coaching areas for every manager.

The outcome of using this patented tool will have a prevailing overachievement business impact on an organization and its teams’ results while ensuring day to day operational excellence.

The 20/80 principle becomes the container for sustained monthly overachievement of an organization’s business and financial objectives. This new performance state constantly reinforces precise organization alignment from the leadership team to the team leaders and their team members while closing the gap of what is expected and what is actually delivered.

The 20/80 principle is the cornerstone for pivoting transaction managers (who manage processes and data) into transformational leaders who lead and create an emotional connection with their team members versus managing them - the by-product is ongoing monthly overachievement results and high morale.

These new and transformed leaders then mature into the role models for their team members. They gain the critical knowledge of how to build exceptional working environments where the team members will give their discretionary time to emulate their leaders - while significantly improving their daily productivity and work efficiencies.

Lastly, the “High Performance Culture” formulas are the statistic-based mathematical and objective structures that will manage the progress of the organization and its team members’ performance capability while ensuring consistency and fairness throughout the organization.

Today, the execution gap is a terminal illness for many organizations—the gap between what is expected and what is actually delivered.

Next Back

Back to Whitepapers Main Page

Ahead to 80/20 Performance Rule

You will finally have the blueprint to transition all of your managers into transformational leaders.