What Does It Mean to Be Reliable or Accountable for Your Job Performance?

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Managers are fond of holding meetings, outlining performance goals and drawing up plans for how to hit benchmarks for the quarter. But few people are fond of sitting down with employees and picking apart what they're doing right or wrong. However, effectively holding employees accountable for their job performance and determining their reliability is an essential part of running a business.

Job Performance and Accountability Definition

Job performance is defined as how well an employee fulfills the goals and benchmarks of his job position, as outlined by the company that employs the worker. By assessing job performance, companies can determine how reliable an employee is and hold him accountable for his work. Accountability is related to job performance; it is when companies hold employees responsible for their performance, whether in a negative or a positive way. Accountability can involve incentive schemes, salary penalties for mistakes or simply performance reviews that regularly evaluate how well employees are doing their jobs.

Incentive Schemes

One way that companies seek to hold employees accountable is by introducing incentive schemes in the workplace. These incentives can be salary increases based on performance, one-time bonuses for hitting performance goals or indirect incentives (such as more vacation time and prize giveaways) for good performance. With incentives in place, employees are compelled to improve their job performance; those who don't are held accountable by missing out on the performance-based incentive.

Performance Reviews

Another key way that companies keep an eye on employee performance and hold workers accountable is through regular performance reviews. Performance reviews are different, depending on the company, but are common in their goal of assessing how well employees are meeting the performance benchmarks of their jobs. Performance reviews can be a useful way for managers to restate their expectations, goals and performance benchmarks to employees. For employees, performance reviews are a way to receive important feedback about their performance and reassess how they do their jobs.

Other Performance and Accountability Considerations

Implementing performance and accountability procedures within a company can be an uphill battle. Many managers find it difficult to deliver honest, critical feedback to employees for fear of becoming unpopular. Conversely, it is essential for managers to educate themselves on how to deliver feedback constructively; those too eager to criticize employees can alienate workers and actually do more harm than good. Concurrently, incentive schemes need to be intelligently implemented as well to enhance accountability. Poorly conceived incentives breed resentment in the office and divide departments and teams.

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