The Complete Performance Management Training Guide

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Performance management training is a training process that’s aimed at management personnel to help them create an effective strategy for increasing the performance of those personnel who serve under them. 

Furthermore, performance management should always be customized to reflect the organization’s policies and practices. These policies must be flexible enough not only to help managers and senior personnel implement performance management policies, but also allow for adaptation to change, volatility and organizational expansion. 

Because of these concerns, it’s important for organizations to establish a general, but flexible framework for carrying out their performance management objectives. So if you want to establish an effective performance management training program for your organization’s key personnel, then here is a step by step guide to help you do it. 

The Complete Performance Management Training Guide 

Step 1 – Define Your Objectives

The first step in establishing an effective performance training program is to identify its objectives. Here are several examples for you to think about: 

  • Teach Personnel How to Review Ratings and Criteria
  • Define the Manager’s Role in Performance Development, Goal Setting and Ensuring High Performance Standards Among Ordinary Personnel
  • Teach Management Personnel Performance-Oriented Discussions
  • Instruct Trainees and Managers On How to Establish A Better Work Environment

By defining these kinds of goals, the effects of performance management on your organization becomes easier to measure, which in turn leads to better effectiveness as well as improved output from all personnel involved in the training. 

Step 2 – Create A Performance Management Continuum

It’s important to emphasize that performance management is just one phase of a much larger process. This process begins with a performance review, which is more concerned with data. From the performance review, the information is used for performance management, which in turn is used to influence goal setting/planning as well as performance planning. 

A performance management continuum can have as many steps as necessary, but what they all have in common is that they incorporate performance management as a central process for ensuring the effectiveness of the entire staff. In other words, the performance management continuum is your long term strategy for performance management, and should be incorporated into any training process that your organization wishes to implement for your managerial personnel. 

Step 3 – Develop Performance Communications

After you have established your goals and strategy for your organization’s performance training program, your next step is to create a system for acquiring information about your personnel’s performance. This process involves several important tasks, including:

  •  Establishing Data for Regular Observation
  •  Analyzing Performance Objectives
  •  Creating Progress Reports
  •  Discussing Key Issues in Performance Management Discussions
  •  Establishing Confidentiality Protocols

These tasks are essential in communicating important information to performance managers, and should form a critical part of their training. In any organization, the efficient and (sometimes) confidential transfer of critical information is important for analyzing the performance of personnel, which means that they should always be implemented as part of your performance management strategy. 

Step 4 – Set Up Your Standards

Once communication has been taken care of, the next step should be to teach your managerial trainees on the importance of setting up standards for your organization’s performance management. Here are several ideas on how you can do this. 
  • Teach managers on how to define and establish goals for each review period
  • Teach managers on how to create mutually consistent time lines for breaking out progress reports on certain goals
  • Teach managers on how to report changes in performance goals and objectives
  • Teach managers on how to quantify, measure and analyze the performance of those personnel who are under them.

Standards help performance managers to know exactly what sort of goals their organization wants to achieve. More importantly, it also tells them if their personnel are meeting such goals or diverging from them. So in setting up a performance management training program, it’s important to incorporate a course which helps management trainees know how standards work within their organization. 

Step 5 – Feedback System 

Performance management training programs should also incorporate a feedback system. These systems are basically designed to allow performance managers to make constructive comments, criticisms and suggestions about the performance of individual personnel, entire divisions, or even their own fellow managers. 

The feedback system should also be designed in such a way as to allow the implementation of quick and efficient solutions whenever serious performance problems are found among personnel. They should also be designed in such a way that they can be used to introduce new ideas or suggestions which can potentially increase the productivity of core personnel. In this sense, teaching managers how to create an effective feedback system is equivalent to teaching them how to address performance problems among personnel. 

Step 6 – Establish Scalability

Finally, performance management training requires an organization to create a system that is scalable. What this means is that the operations, training, appraisals and tests used in the past can be “scaled up” to serve additional personnel as the organization grows. 

This is an important point to remember because whenever organizations grow, the more complicated their operations become. The problem here is that complex systems ultimately experience performance problems, such as redundancies or structural inefficiencies. By teaching your managers how to scale up performance management in order to absorb larger amounts of people, they will be able to help prevent some of the problems which often plague large organizations. 

Although relatively minor compared to the other factors, creating a scalable framework for all performance management related operations will make a lot of people’s jobs a whole lot easier. 


The information here is a general sketch of how performance management education should be undertaken in any given organization. Keep in mind that since different organizations have different policies and long term goals, policies which affect performance management must be constructed in such a way that they can adapt to any changes in the organization, while at the same time maintaining an effective system which can be used to optimized the performance of an organization’s personnel. So in establishing a performance management training program for your organization, always remember that it should designed to serve not only the needs of the organization, but those of the workers and managers as well. Relative information is available on Knowledge management tools page.
Jason is the former Lead Author & Editor of TrainingStation Blog