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Dear Workforce How Do We Develop Behavioral Competencies?

Our financial services company is changing its performance appraisal system to place greater weight on behaviors, rather than the quantity of an employee's work. How can we develop behavioral competencies that are objective, fair and help us know who is performing well and who isn't? We have tried things like attendance/readiness to work in the past, but those metrics didn't always tell us much about actual performance.
July 28, 2011
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Related Topics: Behavioral Training, Workforce Planning, Dear Workforce
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Dear Nonplussed:
Performance-appraisal systems could significantly help elevate an organization's level of success. While there are many types of systems, those that focus on behaviors are the best. Behaviors can be measured and evaluated to determine whether an employee has risen to the occasion. There are a number of ways to determine behaviors that makes sense for the organization, department and employees:
Examine core competencies. Each job has specific core competencies that make it unique and different from other jobs. By looking at core competencies, you can determine which behaviors best match the position.
Review jobs. By taking a fresh look at the job, the behaviors that compose the job will come into focus. Meet with people who do the job and others who are affected by the job to gain insights.
Emphasize outcomes. Performance outcomes can play a significant role in developing your system. For each job, think about the key outcomes that need to be accomplished.
Make it measurable. Behaviors need to be observable and defined within the context of the work and culture.
Make sure you have strategic alignment. Take time to review your strategic plan and think about how specific jobs play a role in achieving the strategy.
Take a strengths-based approach. Determine areas where people excel. Examine ways in which people naturally do good work.
Champion role modeling. Take a look at the organization's high performers. These are the folks who get things done, are viewed as role models and can be helpful in determining specific behaviors for success.
SOURCE: Dana Jarvis, Duquesne University, Pittsburgh
LEARN MORE: Here is a list of workforce competencies that companies often seek to hire or develop.
Workforce Management Online, July 2011 -- Register Now!
The information contained in this article is intended to provide useful information on the topic covered, but should not be construed as legal advice or a legal opinion. Also remember that state laws may differ from the federal law.
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 The information contained in this article is intended to provide useful information on the topic covered, but should not be construed as legal advice or a legal opinion. Also remember that state laws may differ from the federal law.

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