Diving Into Deep Performance: Beyond High Performance
It's a no brainer, creating high performers within your organisation should be a significant part of your focus. What is equally as important is creating sustainable, meaningful, and long-term success. You should be focusing on developing a culture of what I call deep performance.
Deep performance is achieved through strong leadership, consistent performance management, and commitment to the long haul! It's committing to a journey of thinking beyond the moment and making decisions that endure for the ages.
So, What’s the Difference?
High performance refers to individuals or teams achieving results that exceed expectations. High Performers set goals, and smash them out of the park, every time! The results of high performance are evident right away through ticked checklists, goals that are achieved, and success in task execution.
High performance is also unsustainable. How many Olympians do you se competing into their 50's and 60's? High performance equipment is expensive to operate, obsolete in minutes and potentially resource intensive.
Just think about Formula 1, each team costs approximately $200 million to run each year and if they're lucky, a $2.5 million profit. The cars are obsolete at the end of each year.
Deep performance is about creating sustainable, meaningful, and long-term success. It requires performance management and commitment. Deep performance is not for the faint of heart! It is for fierce leaders and teams that are committed to success, even if they don’t see results right away.
Sustainability isn’t created on a once-off occasion, it takes trial and error, and time!
Why Is Deep Performance Important?
Deep performance is important because it reaches into the future from the here and now and sets you up for generational success! It goes beyond the immediate impact and strives for a significant and maintainable influence in the future.
Companies, teams, and individuals that are successful in the quest for deep performance become highly competitive machines that are sought out, fundamentally needed and irreplaceable in their field!
Leaders that value performance, value the future! Performance is an essential aspect of any team and it is indispensable because it draws everyone collectively closer to goals, amplifies your impact, and ensures lasting success.
The How Behind Deep Performance
Essential to deep performance is in its name…performance! To succeed in this area of business, performance must be measured, consistently and thoroughly. This brings us to, performance management.
Performance management is SO much more than an annual review! The best kind of performance review is one that never ends! The Globoforce study in 2011 found that 65% of employees want MORE feedback! If you want better performance, you must give better and frequent feedback!
There are three key features of performance management that you must implement, to maximise your deep performance.
Setting goals that are achievable, measurable, and consistent with overarching business goals.
Goals are vital, however, selecting the right goals is a fine balance! When goals are too easy, there is no performance increase or stretch in capability, but when goals exceed skill, knowledge, and ability too much, people won’t even attempt to reach them!
Goals must be achievable! They need to have a level of stretch for the individual to push them further in their performance, but they are ineffective when there is no chance of achieving them at all.
Set two goals, one the team can reach without working too hard, another that'll get them striving to deliver to the next level!
Goals need to be measurable! There is no point in setting goals if you can’t tell if you have reached them or not. For goals that aren’t measurable, it is also very difficult to create clear steps for the path to success.
Goals have to align with the company goals! Without cohesion between individual and collective goals, it is like pulling a ship in two different directions yet hoping to forward! Shared goals create unity and a shared desire to achieve success together!
Feedback, Feedback, Feedback!
Employees want to do well! To know if they are doing well or not, they need feedback, and it must be more than once a year! Feedback at consistent intervals is undoubtedly more effective than once-a-year feedback.
Be constructive, pick the right time and place for feedback, be specific and avoid negative language. Combining these pointers will allow you to give feedback often, and to do it well.
Keep the Conversation Going!
Don’t stop the conversation! Create a culture that regularly discusses goals, plans, learning, and coaching. Keeping the conversation going allows for corrections to be made quickly, rather than delayed responses to actions that have become habitual.
Fierce Leaders Dive Deep!
Deep performance is not for leaders who want to cut corners to arrive at the destination quicker. It is for those leaders who are persistent, consistent, and optimistic! Working hard now for results you may not see until into the future is difficult, but it is the core of performance that makes a difference.
If you want impactful and lasting success, create a culture of deep performance! Help your team dive into deep performance by changing the way you review it! Set SMART goals, give honest and regular feedback, and don’t drop the conversation about where you are headed!
Deep Performance References –
Beekley, T. (2015). 5 Reasons why annual performance reviews don’t work. Quantum Workplace. https://www.quantumworkplace.com/future-of-work/5-reasons-annual-performance-reviews-dont-work/
Capri, R., Douglas, J., & Gascon, F. (2017). Performance management: why keeping score is so important and so hard. McKinsey & Company. https://www.mckinsey.com/business-functions/operations/our-insights/performance-management-why-keeping-score-is-so-important-and-so-hard
HR Central. (2018). The importance of feedback in the workplace. HR Central. https://hrcentral.com.au/blog/feedback/
Lauby, S. (2017). 5 Key components of any successful performance management process. HR Bartender. https://www.hrbartender.com/2017/employee-engagement/5-components-performance-management/
Meier, J. D. (n.d.). How do you define high performance as an individual? Sources of Insight. https://sourcesofinsight.com/high-performance-defined/
Rosser, J. (n.d.). 5 Elements of performance management success for any aspiring business. Success Stream. https://www.success-stream.co.uk/5-elements-performance-management-success-aspiring-business/
TNEED. (2019). What is job performance and why is it important? TNEED. https://medium.com/@TNEED_/what-is-job-performance-and-why-is-it-important-1ce7b3db8fce
Workhuman. (2011). Globoforce reveals 2011 workforce mood tracker survey results. Workhuman. https://www.globoforce.com/press-releases-archive/globoforce-reveals-2011-workforce-mood-tracker-survey-results/