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Seb Anthony

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Delivering Performance Management training to a mixed ability group?


In November, I have to deliver a Performance Management training session to all managers within the group in a "sheep dip" approach (NB: Unfortunately this is non negotiable - it was agreed before my arrival in my role).

There will be a range of managers attending, from those who are very new in a management role, right though to those that have been there years.

I need to cover the "basics" eg: SMART objectives, the forms etc for the new ones, but the more experienced managers are likely to be bored to death. Equally, I'm not entirely sure I can think of any really "advanced" activities around the topic for them either. Does anyone have any challenging activities I can use on this topic?

I know there is a lot I can send out as pre-course work to bring people to a similar level, but any suggestions would be gratefully received.
Helen Wyatt

5 Responses

  1. here’s a way
    Hi Helen
    ~sending out all the theory material in advance and INSISTING that it must be completed before attendance at a workshop.
    ~on the day do a quick refresher on the theory to answer any questions/raise any motivation issues (a couple of hours with 12 delegates should be fine
    ~then spend the rest of the day doing practice sessions with you (and another facilitator if you can afford it {I’m a six foot four 17 stone bald man and my second facilitators are all very different types to me, this gives the delegates a range of people to interact with) playing the role of the staff member and them BEING themselves. Use short realistic and generic case studies (if you can generate these in advance from the client group all the better)
    ~extract your “learning” from the feedback and analysis after the practice sessions, people who do “well” are teaching the others and so are people who don’t do so well. This often proves to the newbies that THEY can do it as well as proving to the experienced hands that either a) they ARE good at it or b) they have some “bad” habits.
    ~collect all the “Learning Points” and diseminate them to the group as an aid memoire afterwards.

    I’ve been doing it like this for two years with one client and it always goes down really well

    Hope this helps

  2. Hmmm…..

    This sounds very familiar. I may know your client well. If you want to give me a call I can test that theory and may be able to give you some insight.

    01509 228896

  3. “Setting”
    Is there any way you could group your attendees so that you have more or less homogenous groups?

    I have always found it counterproductive for both ends of the spectrum to have “old hands” and “newbies” together in the same group session.

    The newbies are often intimidated by the old hands, and the old hands are less likely to admit to ignorance on a specific point in the presence of newbies.

  4. Engaging Performance Management
    In my experience the mixing of managers with different levels of experience makes for a more creative exciting and energised session, as you can use the more experienced managers to help the less experienced ones. Perhaps in a role play situation. I was involved in a session where we as experienced managers developed and played out realistic sceniarios with actors highlighting good and bad performance management one-to-ones and how best to manage and deliver the process within the context of the organisations set proceed. We also used a Forum theatre approach to the setting of SMART objectives and what would constitute the best approach to performance management. Where learners engaged with what they were watching and changed the course of play and thus learnt by seeing and doing. The experienced managers led this alongside the facilitators.


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