When managers agree performance requirements with their staff, there are two main problems. First, it is too easy to focus on obvious, easily quantifiable aspects of performance and overlook the more subtle, yet crucial, activities that lead to success. Second, stated performance requirements can be too narrow or vague. The result is that managers' understanding of performance requirements may differ from that of their staff, with detrimental repercussions for performance. The solution is to identify the aspects of performance critical to success and for managers and staff to reach a common understanding of those aspects. The key-area approach is a tool to help achieve that solution.
The key-area approach is best described as a framework for dialogue between managers and their staff. It helps them to jointly identify what performance is required and how performance will be measured. This tool allows delegates to experience this dialogue amongst themselves and, once they have seen its benefits, it will encourage them to commence similar dialogue with their staff.
- To help managers have a dialogue with staff about key performance areas.