How can You Improve Employee Performance?

How can You Improve Employee Performance?

To improve employee performance you need to use strategies which encourage your employees to exceed expectations. Strategies include setting expectations, managing performance, communicating, motivating, providing feedback and solving problems. You can have the most highly skilled and trained workforce but without good management strategies they will struggle to reach their performance targets. Engaged and supported employees have a good balance between their ability to do the task and a clear focus and understanding of how to reach their targets.

Performance Strategies

Underlying all good relationship is trust. Trust is the foundation which enables a group of individuals to work together. Without it people are less likely to share ideas, cooperate with one another and take responsibility. It fosters shared aims and meaningful goals. Developing trust is an essential leadership skill. When trust is created it has a huge impact on teamwork and communication skills. So how can you create the trust needed so your team can flourish?

1. Be Open

Nobody is perfect. We all have strengths and weaknesses. By being open and honest about this managers can help other feel more comfortable and less stressed. Encourage feedback from your employees. This is a two way process. You provide feedback to them on their performance and should be prepared to accept feedback from them on your. 

2. Encourage Security

Trust is often built on knowing information is safe. When we feel secure when we know another person will not use information we give them inappropriately. 

3. Stop and Listen

By taking time to listen to the views of others we can understand so much more about what is happening around us. The purpose of listening should be to understand the viewpoint of someone else and not just to give your own reply. 

4. Be a Good Role Model

Team members will naturally look to their manager for cues on appropriate behaviour. For example, if you turn up to work late everyday it is highly likely they will too. By conducting yourself appropriately and keeping to the rules and procedures of your working environment your team will trust your good character and reliability. 

5. Support Your Team

Be consistent with your support. Provide regular one to ones and performance reviews. Value these above other meetings and obligations you have. Your team re your most valuable asset. Treat them as such. Back them up. Your team look to you for guidance and support. When things don’t go to plan they need to know you will support them up and make sure they are not treated unfairly. 

6. Respect Your Team

You cannot expect your team to have respect and faith in you if you do not show the same towards them. They may not have the same authority and position as you but their place in the team is important and they should always be treated as such. 

7. Accept Responsibility

As the leader the responsibility for any mistakes or unfortunate outcomes is yours. There will be lessons to be learnt and ways team members can improve their knowledge or skills. Confidence and honesty are essential in tackling tricky feedback. Keep you feedback frequent, relevant and useful. Mangers mustn’t shy away from challenging situations but address them head on. Well thought out and constructed feedback will help the employee get back on track and feel valued and appreciated as you have taken the time and effort to work with them to resolve their issues.

8. Accept Disagreement

This doesn’t mean you should always agree with things you aren’t happy with. But open discussions and exploration of disagreements are the best way to solve problems. If your team feel confident enough to openly disagree with decisions this is a good indicator they trust you. They know you will respond appropriately and fairly. Importantly they won’t disagree behind your back and cause disharmony. 

9. Value Your Team 

Just as you have strengths and weaknesses, so do you team. Identify the strengths and encourage them. Provide training, support and guidance for weaknesses and always provide opportunities to learn from mistakes. 

10. Give Praise

Everyone need to feel valued and important from time to time. It is essential for self worth and motivation. When people feel positively acknowledged it reinforces trust.


Engage in Learning’s Performance Management Pathway courses will introduce you to ways to develop a motivated, high performance workforce and how to set achievable expectations. The Performance Improvement Strategies module will show you how to encourage your employee to exceed expectation, increase motivation and work with those who are under-performing. 

Our Performance Improvement Strategies course can be found here.