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Blog : High performance culture – how to do it


High performance culture – how to do it

‘Creating a high performance culture’; one that improves both top and bottom lines, has, perhaps, become the holy grail of today’s organisation. Often discussed in the boardroom and beyond, yet not always delivered, it is achievable if, as with all major challenges, you break it down and make it simple. It’s never going to be ‘an initiative’; it’s about managing a robust change process; a clear strategy that evolves over time; doing the right things to deliver.

Gallup research (in the Gulf States though rings true anywhere) identified the crucial components of a high performance company as:


1. Implement an effective performance management process

This is about:

  • Clearly articulated, shared and individual goals and objectives, with well- defined standards and expectations from the outset
  • Self-assessment led progress reviews so that it’s clear who the high and low performers are
  • Learning and support and / or remedial action as required


2. Create empowerment and authority

This is about:

  • Creating trust and accountability
  • People who give discretionary effort to respond to change, developing innovative ideas to stay ahead
  • Connecting with customers to deliver a great brand experience


3. Increase leadership capability at all levels of the company

This is about:

  • Leaders as role models for the shared mission and purpose creating collective excitement about the company’s future
  • Leaders who are accessible and visible; communicating with teams, inspiring trust and respect
  • Involving employees in developing strategy using their  specialist knowledge and ideas


4. Develop a customer-centric strategy

This is about:

  • Connecting the brand, people, mission and purpose with customers and the community
  • Employee understanding of ‘the why’ - individual and collective responsibilities in listening and responding to customers
  • Sharing stories of customer excellence and involving teams in designing service improvements


5. Increase communication and collaboration

This is about:

  • Ensuring that leaders and managers understand their role in the communication process (internal and external)
  • Facilitating regular and open one-on-one conversations to create direction, action and trust
  • Using a collaborative approach to ensure high levels of responsiveness and quality


6. Enhance training and development

This is about:

  • Setting employees up to succeed; continuous improvement and growth
  • Viewing talent as a ‘corporate asset’; ensuring internal mobility and opportunity
  • Customised, self-driven development plans – learning resources that are available as and when needed by the individual


Each of the points above are just as important as the rest, and must be integrated to work effectively. Imagine what being attuned to your people’s needs could do for your organisation…

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