Performance Management

This describes the performance management system that supervisors are required to use for all Administrative staff. This system may also be used, or modified, for managing the performance of other staff members, but it is not required.

Performance Management includes formal and informal communications. Ongoing informal two-way dialogue, what we call coaching and relationship building, are the foundation of Wittenberg's system. Goal Setting and Assessment are the formal components of the system.

Performance Management is one of the top most important responsibilities of a supervisor. Some supervisors mistakenly think that performance management and annual review or assessment are the same thing. Performance Management is much broader. It is not a program with a definitive beginning and ending, but rather it is a variety of approaches to support, develop and direct the efforts of staff.

Wittenberg's Performance Management system is intended to:

  • Promote dialogue between supervisors and staff,
  • Maximize performance,
  • Direct efforts toward strategic and operational goals,
  • Promote accountability for performance,
  • Stimulate communication between departments, and
  • Identify training needs and development and promotion opportunities.

The system includes the following components to take place within specific time periods throughout the year:

  • Goal Setting,
  • Upward Feedback,
  • Mid-year Review, and
  • Performance Assessment.

The following is a brief overview of each of these key components.

1. Setting Performance Goals (May 1 - September 1)

Setting performance goals gives supervisors and their staff a way to communicate expectations, clarify performance standards, and direct performance toward Wittenberg 's strategic and operational plans.

2. Mid-Year Review (January 1 - February 15)

A mid-year review should be held to review the staff member's progress in accomplishing the agreed upon goals and, if necessary, to revise the goals. Both the supervisor and the staff member have a responsibility to initiate this process and to ensure continued communication.

3. Upward Feedback (January 1 - February 15)

Upward feedback is a process that gives staff a formal opportunity to provide input to their supervisor. Input is geared toward improving the working relationship between the supervisor and his or her staff.

For upward feedback to work effectively, there needs to be a level of trust between supervisors and subordinates. Overall, supervisors must demonstrate a strong interest to receive input and a willingness to consider adjustments based on the input. It must be clear that the process will not negatively impact the staff member's compensation or career development. The process also depends on staff providing constructive feedback to supervisors, rather than resorting to personal vendettas.

4. Performance Assessment (April 15 - September 1)

Performance assessments are important for a number of reasons. Such assessments:

  • Serve as a Planning Tool. Formal performance assessments provide a structured opportunity to discuss what has been accomplished, what needs to be accomplished and how the staff member will contribute to the departmental goals.
  • Promote Accountability. Individual accountability and responsibility are critical to the overall success of a department and the university. Performance assessments are a means to hold individuals accountable for expected results.
  • Identify Development Needs. When staff members and supervisors candidly discuss performance, they can jointly identify areas needing improvement and development of skill sets to better support departmental goals. Supervisors and staff should design a development plan.
  • Create a Permanent Record. The performance assessment is the only place where an entire year's work is appraised. We tend to lose sight of that extended period of time and focus on the most recent events - both positive and negative.

The following links describe in detail each of the four key components - goal setting, mid-year review, upward feedback and assessment. The performance management forms are also included:


(Forms may be downloaded or printed off, If downloading and typing on them, Please hit the "Insert" key on your key board before typing and then hit insert once more when you are done)

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