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Painless Performance Conversations: A Practical Approach to Critical Day-to-Day Workplace Discussions

Book Description

Actionable communication and management strategies for tackling difficult workplace discussions

Delivering the uncomfortable news that an employee is not stacking up can be stressful, and managers often have difficulties finding the right words to get their message across. Painless Performance Conversations presents actionable and practical communication and management strategies for any manager looking to effectively influence employee performance. Learn how to focus these conversations for maximum impact on performance, crystallize expectations for what success looks like, and engage employees in solution-finding.

Presenting four key mindsets and an easy to use conversation model, this book offers the tangible solutions managers need to tackle critical workplace discussions with poise and professionalism, as well as the tools needed to stay focused in otherwise difficult conversations.

  • Eliminates the pain and fear that leads to procrastination of tough workplace conversations.

  • Reduces the harmful impacts of judgment in performance conversation

  • Helps managers create a culture of ownership and accountability

  • Author Marnie E. Green is a featured blogger for Jobing.com and shares her popular and practical management perspectives in keynotes, webinars, and workshops with thousands of leaders in organizations worldwide

Painless Performance Conversations will help you to lead performance-related conversations with confidence and create a culture of workplace accountability.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
  2. Praise for Painless Performance Conversations
  3. Title Page
  4. Copyright
  5. Dedication
  6. Preface
  7. Acknowledgments
  8. Chapter 1: Be a Catalyst: Fostering Painless Performance Conversations
    1. The Primary Tool of Catalyst Managers
    2. Employees Want Meaningful Conversations
    3. Painless Performance Conversations Defined
    4. Subjects of Painless Performance Conversations
    5. Avoiding Performance Conversations
    6. Painless Performance Conversations and Painless Performance Evaluations
    7. What's Ahead?
    8. Conversation Checkpoints
    9. From the Field
    10. Next Up
  9. Chapter 2: Have the Guts: Tackling Performance Conversations Head On
    1. You're an Avoider If ...
    2. Embrace It
    3. The Potentially Long Road
    4. Deciding to Take the Road
    5. Creating a Clone or a Valued Contributor
    6. Conversation Checkpoints
    7. From the Field
    8. Next Up
  10. Chapter 3: Form Clear Expectations: Making Your List
    1. Clear Expectations
    2. Sources of Expectations
    3. Determining Your Personal Expectations
    4. Creating Your List
    5. Collaborating with Employees on Your List
    6. Setting Expectations When You Are in a Temporary Assignment
    7. When Expectations Change
    8. Conversation Checkpoints
    9. From the Field
    10. Next Up
  11. Chapter 4: Share Your Expectations: Conveying a Picture of Success
    1. Opportunities to Talk about Expectations
    2. Tips for Making the Most of Expectation-Setting Opportunities
    3. The Sound of an Informal Expectation-Setting Opportunity
    4. Leading a Formal Conversation about Performance Expectations
    5. The Sound of a Formal Expectation-Setting Conversation
    6. Keeping the Conversation Going
    7. Conversation Checkpoints
    8. From the Field
    9. Next Up
  12. Chapter 5: Lead with Behavior: Separating Actions from Attitudes
    1. Behavior versus Attitude
    2. Naming Attitudes and Behaviors
    3. Evidence of Behavior
    4. What You Observe versus What You Assume
    5. Focusing on Attitude Can Lead to Discrimination
    6. Conversation Checkpoints
    7. From the Field
    8. Next Up
  13. Chapter 6: Eliminate Judgment: Focusing on Performance Evidence
    1. It's Up to You
    2. Judgment versus Evidence
    3. Focus on the Gap
    4. What Creates Performance Gaps?
    5. Closing the Gaps
    6. Giving Better Feedback
    7. Conversation Checkpoints
    8. From the Field
    9. Next Up
  14. Chapter 7: Inquire with Purpose: Using Curiosity to Expand Possibilities
    1. Making Space in the Conversation
    2. Respond in Question Marks
    3. Ask, Ask, Ask
    4. What to Ask
    5. The Power of Questions
    6. Five Whys
    7. Tell Me about It
    8. Guidelines for Powerful Questions
    9. Putting It All Together
    10. Conversation Checkpoints
    11. From the Field
    12. Next Up
  15. Chapter 8: Be Clear: Creating a Culture of Ownership
    1. Moving Beyond Accountability
    2. An Alternative to Accountability
    3. An Alternative Approach: Ownership
    4. Establishing a Culture of Ownership
    5. Tips for Engaging Employees' Hearts and Minds
    6. Creating the Hook
    7. Delegating Back
    8. Conversation Checkpoints
    9. From the Field
    10. Next Up
  16. Chapter 9: Show Confidence: Conducting the Conversation
    1. Location, Location, Location
    2. A Development State of Mind
    3. Three Essential Elements of a Painless Performance Conversation
    4. The Painless Performance Conversation Model
    5. Painless Performance Conversation Planner
    6. Completing the Planner
    7. Painless Performance Conversation Example
    8. Conversation Checkpoints
    9. From the Field
    10. Next Up
  17. Chapter 10: What If?: Your Toughest Performance Conversations
    1. Case Study—The Late Employee
    2. Case Study—The Resistant Employee
    3. Case Study—The Gossip Who Stirs the Pot
    4. Case Study—Serious Policy Violations
    5. Case Study—The Struggling Employee
    6. Case Study—The Longterm Employee
    7. Next Up
  18. Conclusion
  19. Appendix
  20. About the Management Education Group, Inc.
  21. About the Author
  22. Index