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How Social Tools Are Changing Performance Management

Morgan Norman is the founder and CEO of WorkSimple, the social performance application focused on social goals, feedback and recognition for you, your team and company. Connect with him and WorkSimple on Facebook and Twitter.

Cutting edge apps, software, websites and gadgets are sparking big changes in the workplace. Consequently, traditional performance reviews are no longer making the cut, and with good reason.

How are social and digital tools changing performance reviews? The following key players in the social goal and performance space talk about the effect of digital tools and the future of performance management.


1. Everything Is Social


The past decade has fostered an incredible advance in social technology. According to Sharlyn Lauby, creator of the HR Bartender blog, organizations are starting to make the natural transition toward a more social workplace.

She advises organizations looking to add a social aspect to ask the following questions: Why are we adding a social component? What do we hope to accomplish? How does this integrate with the existing pieces of our performance management process?

“Once you know the answers to those questions, develop a plan to revamp the current system and integrate social into the workplace,” she says.


2. Social Instills Better Purpose


The performance review as we know it has become irrelevant in the face of social goals, says Jody Thompson, co-creator of ROWE. In the presence of social goals, employees understand their value and place in the big picture.

“Social goals immediately tap into intrinsic motivation, [making] the old-fashioned measures of [meeting or exceeding expectations] seem ludicrous,” says Thompson. “Social goals when attached to performance give everyone in the organization purpose and focus. Event-based performance review systems then become unnecessary when the workforce is optimizing performance real-time.”


3. Shift Toward Engagement


Finally, as the social workplace shifts toward goals, engagement becomes the natural step, shares Ben Peterson, co-founder and CEO of BambooHR.

“Most people check the box to say they’ve done their performance review, then don’t think about it again for another year,” he says. “Social goals need to meld meld into currently used systems in a measurable way that will engage and motivate — or it’s as useless as the status quo.”

With digital tools, employees are kept in real-time and engaged far more than their counterparts. In the long run, employees are happier, management becomes smoother, and organizations achieve more success.

What do you think? What social and digital tools are making the biggest impact? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

Image courtesy of iStockphoto, STEEX

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